Subject: RT: World Bank says Indonesia donors watching E.Timor
Date: Sat, 24 Jul 1999 12:13:58 -0400
From: "John M. Miller" <>

World Bank says Indonesia donors watching E.Timor

JAKARTA, July 21 (Reuters) - The World Bank said on Wednesday international donors to Indonesia would be closely watching the situation in disputed East Timor and could change their stance if a U.N.-supervised independence ballot was disrupted.

``I certainly understand from a number of donors that they share a strong interest in ensuring that the U.N.-process in Timor proceeds smoothly, and that there is a peaceful election in East Timor,'' Mark Baird, World Bank country director for Indonesia, told a news conference.

Donors in the Consultative Group for Indonesia are due to meet in Paris on July 27 and 28 to discuss loans for Indonesia. The World Bank said they were expected to pledge $5.5 billion to $6.0 billion to plug Indonesia's budget gap in the current fiscal year.

``I'm sure the situation could be different if there was a change in the situation in East Timor, and I'm sure donors will be watching that very closely,'' Baird said.

``But at this stage...if they send a message it will be a positive message that they would like to see the process stay on track.''

Baird said donors were also keen to ensure that Indonesia's transition to a new government proceeded smoothly.

Indonesia has agreed with the United Nations to hold a independence referendum in East Timor in August.

But the U.N. has yet to decide whether the ballot can go ahead, saying violence by pro-Jakarta militias supported by the Indonesian military has put the process at risk.

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