Subject: Wiranto: Timor Leste case`s closed case
also Former Timor militias reject CTF report
News focus: RI, Timor Leste express remorse over Dili atrocities
Wiranto: Timor Leste case`s closed case
Makassar, (ANTARA News) - General Chairman of the People`s Conscience Party (Hanura) Gen (ret) Wiranto assumed that the case of the Timor Leste riot had been settled.
"All generals allegedly involved in human rights violations in Timor Leste have been tried by a special military tribunal and acquitted," former military top commander of the new order said after a meeting with his party`s cadres in Takalar, South Sulawesi, on Tuesday.
According to Wiranto, if the case would have to be brought to an international tribunal, he would wait for the decision of the Indonesian and Timor Leste governments.
"We will leave it to the government and we also assume that there was a mistake at that time, as everything was conducted in accordance with the standing procedures," he said.
Asked about rumours that he might be banned from the 2009 general elections following the latest report from the Indonesia-Timor Leste Commission of Truth and Friendship that there were human rights violations prior to and during the post-referendum period in Timor Leste, Wiranto said the 34 political parties which would join next year`s general election had reached an agreement that they would not redicule any individual party and their presidential candidates. (*)
The Jakarta Post Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Former Timor militias reject CTF report
Yemris Fointuna and Abdul Khalik, The Jakarta Post, Kupang, Jakarta
Former pro-integration militias have rejected a truth commission report that blames them and the Indonesian government for gross human rights violations during the 1999 carnage in East Timor.
Ex-militia leader Eurico Guterres said Monday all East Timor (now Timor Leste) residents who became Indonesian citizens after the former Indonesian province voted for independence in 1999 considered the report "unfair and unbalanced".
He said the report fails to take into account gross human rights violations perpetrated by Fretilin and other pro-independence groups from 1975 to 1999, which claimed the lives of thousands of pro-integration supporters.
"We reject the report also because the CTF failed to get officials of UNAMET (UN Assistance Mission in East Timor) to testify. They were the ones to blame because they organized the referendum and then cheated, which led to violence," Guterres told the press in Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara, where he and other former pro-autonomy militia members live.
The report by the Indonesia-Timor Leste joint Commission for Truth and Friendship (CTF) found that gross rights violations in the form of crimes against humanity, such as murder, rape, torture, illegal detention and forced deportation against civilian populations, did occur in East Timor in 1999.
The report, a copy of which was obtained by The Jakarta Post, concluded that pro-autonomy militias were the "primary direct perpetrators" of the gross rights abuses.
The commission said Indonesian Military (TNI) personnel, police and civilian authorities consistently and systematically cooperated with and supported the militias in a number of significant ways that contributed to the perpetration of the crimes.
East Timor voted overwhelmingly to end 24 years of Indonesian rule in a 1999 referendum that triggered of killing, looting and burning that resulted in at least 1,000 deaths, according to witnesses and a previous UN inquiry.
Indonesia established an ad hoc human rights tribunal to try military and civilian officials charged with carrying out the crimes, but all 18 officials and civilians were later cleared of charges.
Guterres, who had been jailed over the violence but was acquitted by the Supreme Court in April, said the former militia groups would file a letter of protest with the government against the report after the commission officially submitted it to the governments of Indonesia and Timor Leste.
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Timor Leste President Jose Ramos-Horta are scheduled to formally receive the report in Bali on Tuesday.
In Jakarta, TNI chief Gen. Djoko Santoso said Monday the military would respond to the report after the government officially received it.
"We will study it first," he was quoted as saying by Antara news agency after a hearing with the House of Representatives' Commission I for defense and foreign affairs.
A coalition of human rights groups, including the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras) and the Human Rights Working Group, quickly urged the government to establish a human rights court to try those involved in rights abuses as mentioned in the report, as well as to conduct reparations for the victims.
"The report should be used as new evidence for the establishment of a new tribunal court to try the perpetrators," rights activist Hendardi said.
But Defense Minister Juwono Sudarsono dismissed any possibility of retrying the perpetrators, saying the goal of the CTF was "restorative justice" aimed at fixing bilateral relations.