|Subject: [CFFB] Report on the Monitoring of the
Ballot (May-June 1999)
Date: Sat, 26 Jun 1999 08:54:23 +0000
From: FORTILOS <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Report on the Monitoring of the Ballot May-June 1999
Committee for a Free and Fair Ballot Jl Gov. Serpa Rosa T-095 - Dili, EAST TIMOR Tel (0390) 313323 Facs (0390) 313324
On May 5, 1999 the governments of Portugal and Indonesia signed an agreement regarding the resolution of East Timor problem. Both governments gave a mandate to the Secretary General of the UN to consult the people of East Timor on the Indonesian government's proposal of wide-ranging autonomy. This agreement represents a step forward in the process of resolving the 24 year-old East Timor problem.
The agreement, nevertheless, contains a number of weaknesses. It appears that the agreement was drafted without an understanding of the real situation on the ground and the existing aspirations of the East Timorese people. One weakness can be seen in the article regarding security matters: the UN trusts the Indonesian government to create and maintain the security of the territory. For the East Timorese who have been living for 24 years under threats from the Indonesian military, this kind of agreement is worrisome.
Our worries have not proven groundless. After the agreement was signed, human rights violations continued. The Indonesian Police (Polri), given the authority to maintain the security, and the Indonesian Military (TNI), expected to stay neutral, have been unable to carry out their appointed tasks. There is overwhelming evidence that both Polri and TNI are involved in the recent wave of violence and have violated of the terms of the New York agreement. Besides, some East Timorese believe that UNAMET has been too slow in performing its tasks and has thus allowed various violations by the Indonesian government to occur.
This report is a summary of violations committed by the Indonesian government and a general assessment about the activities of the UNAMET after the agreement between Portugal and Indonesia was signed on May 5, 1999. This report is the first one in a series planned by the Independent Committee for Monitoring the Ballot.
II. SOCIALIZATION OF THE AUTONOMY PLAN
According to the schedule contained in the New York agreement for the preparation and execution of a popular consultation, the UN is supposed to begin disseminating information to the East Timorese on May 10, 1999. In Annex II on the modalities of the popular consultation, item E-a, it is mentioned that the UN will disseminate and explain the content of the main agreement and the autonomy plan in an impartial and factual manner; and explain to the voters the process and procedure of the vote as well as the implications of each choice (rejecting or accepting the autonomy plan).
However, until early June 1999, UNAMET showed no sign of seriously carrying out this particular task. Cooperation with the local daily newspaper and radio station started in early June -- one month late. The mass media published in Indonesia, until now, has not been touched by UNAMET's program of "dissemination of information."
Meanwhile, the pro-autonomy groups, with the support of the Indonesian government, including the TNI and Polri, started its "socialization of the autonomy plan" immediately after the New York Agreement was signed. This was in spite of the fact that the agreement does not give any authority to the Indonesian government to get involved in a program of "dissemination of information." This practice alone can be considered as a violation of the agreement, given that this program of "socializing the autonomy plan" is nothing less than an open campaign to support autonomy, which according to the schedule in the agreement can only begin on July 20, 1999.
Based on our monitoring work in the field, we have found the following forms of violations of the agreement:
1. People forced to support autonomy
Since June 1, 1999, in sub-district Hatolia, district Ermera, the pro-autonomy group, Democracy and Justice Association Forum (FPDK) in Ermera, has collaborated with the People's Resistance (Wanra) and the Red Blood Militia, to "socialize the autonomy plan." Led by Augusto Cardoso, among others, the leaders of these groups coerced the people into promising to vote for autonomy, and threatened to kill them if they reject the plan. Members of the TNI were seen guarding the members of FPDK, Wanra and Red Blood Militia. People in the area have to obediently follow the dictates of these groups; if they appear to hesitate in their support, they are arrested and abused. On one occasion, a speaker in this "socialization of the autonomy plan" program stated that the CNRT did not exist anymore in Ermera, and that the church, including Bishop Belo, the priests and nuns could not be trusted because they forcibly collected money from the people. Speakers have also stated that the UN, human rights workers, and people of other institutions, would be challenged by the FPDK, the militia and Wanra if they came to Hatolia, and would all be shot if they resisted.
In Ritabou village, sub-district Maliana Kota, district Bobonaro, on June 14, 1999 the Dadarus Merah Putih militia held a program for "consolidation of tasks." On that occasion, the Kodim Commander of Maliana, Lt. Col. Burhanuddin Siagian appeared as one of the speakers and said that wide-ranging autonomy plan had to be accepted in district Bobonaro. If the people of Ritabou and district Bobonaro did not accept the plan, they would all be wiped out. Another speaker who gave a welcome speech, the Head of East Timorese People's United Front (BRTT) in Bobonaro, Francisco Soares Pereira, who is also the Head of the Public Works Office of Bobonaro, threatened the people that if they did not vote in favor of autonomy, the pro-autonomy group would fight a war until their last drop of blood.
These kinds of mobilizations in support of the autonomy plan have been frequently held. In sub-district Metinaro, district Dili, on May 10, 1999, the leaders of the Aitarak militia, along with the officials of the sub-district office and the security personnel, forced people to attend a grand roll call. They threatened that any one who did not attend the ceremony would be presumed to be pro-independence and would be arrested and killed.
The Red and White Iron militia destroyed the home of Paul Diaz (55), a resident of Mota Ulun village, sub-district Maubara, district Liquiça, because he did not attend the ceremony to pledge loyalty to the Indonesian flag and the Indonesian nation. The militia looted his possessions and burned down his house. The Independent Committee has received similar reports from all 13 districts, mostly from the villages.
Another technique used by the militia is to coerce people into signing a statement of loyalty to the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia. This occurred, for example, in Costa village sub-district Pante-Makassar, district Ambeno. On May 5, 1999, villagers were forced to sign a statement that they "loved the red and white." This statement was circulated by the leader of Sakunar Militia, Simao Lopes. People who refused to sign the statement were intimidated, arrested and some of them even tortured. They were listed as members of the pro-independence groups who would be targeted for arrest and death.
Many people have been coerced en masse into hoisting the red and white flag (the Indonesian flag) in front of their houses. This type of pressure began in January 1999 in Maubara when that territory was occupied by the Red and White Iron Rod militia. Similar practices occurred in several other areas, such as in sub-district Atabae, district Bobonaro which is the headquarters of the Halilintar Militia. After the massacre in Liquiça on April 6, 1999, the militias ordered everyone in nearly the entire western territory to hoist the Indonesian flag. The people were threatened that if they did not hoist the flag, they would be considered enemies. In Dili, the same order was imposed after the attack launched by Aitarak and Red and White Iron militias.
2. Campaign not in accordance to the schedule set up by the UN agreement
Another violation committed by the officials of the Indonesian government and the pro-autonomy groups is the running of their campaigns before the scheduled time. According to the agreement, the campaign to support the autonomy package can only be carried out on and after July 20, 1999. Until that time, the UN is fully responsible for the task of disseminating information about the vote; neither the Indonesian nor Portuguese governments should be involved. Yet, evidence released in the daily Suara Timor Timur [Voice of East Timor] shows that government officials, supporters of the autonomy package, and the security personnel are involved in a concerted campaign in favor of the autonomy plan.
On May 21, 1999 there was an activity called "socialization of the wide-ranging autonomy plan" held at Klavis function Hall at the office of the Governor of East Timor. Those who spoke were a representative of the Indonesian Foreign Ministry, Heru Purwanto, and Abilio Jose Osorio Soares, the Governor, and other local officials. The governor said that all civil servants working for the provincial government should understand the concept of wide-ranging autonomy and support it. At the district level, the "socialization of the autonomy plan" is to be carried out by the head of the district, the local TNI and Polri officials. For example, on May 15,1999 in village Com, sub-district Lautem, Head of the district Lautem, Edmundo da Conceiçao, opened the first such activity and said that the people should not be influenced by irresponsible people and should strengthen the forces in favor of wide-ranging autonomy.
On May 12, 1999, at the hall of the Kodim 1632/Aileu office, there was a loyalty ceremony to accept wide-ranging autonomy led by the Commander of Kodim 1632/Aileu, Captain Inf Solavide Dolok Saribu. Around 500 people attended the event, including members of Wanra, the association of the soldiers' wives (Dharma Pertiwi), and families of the militias. For three days after the ceremony, there was a "peace safari" - a tour organized by the Aileu local authority (Muspida), the head of the Regional People's Representatives Council (DPRD), the chairman of the FPDK, and the commander of AHI Militia in Aileu. On this tour, they said that the wide-ranging autonomy package offered by Indonesia was the best way to resolve the East Timor problem. The peak of the program was the drinking of animal's blood as a sign of loyalty to the wide-ranging autonomy package, which was joined by representatives from every village in that district.
Under the UN agreement, Polri officers are expected to maintain security and adopt a neutral stand toward the ballot. However, they have committed similar violations. On May 17, 1999 there was a training session for civil servants regarding the special autonomy package at the auditorium of the District Office of Manufahi. The Chief of the Resort Police, Major (Pol.) A. Rochim, asked the audience to socialize the special autonomy package in the villages so that the people will vote for accepting the offer during the upcoming ballot. At the same time, the Head of the Regional People's Representatives Council, Jaime da Costa, said that the guerrillas in the jungle only fight for their own personal interests, while those who fight for the people's interests belong to the pro-autonomy group.
Various activities for "socialization of special autonomy plan" in the villages have been carried out with pressure and intimidation. In the cities, at the district level or government's offices, the officials tend to encourage people without necessarily coercing them to choose one way or another.
3. Granting rewards in the form of money and goods to the supporters of the autonomy plan (money politics)
In district Ambeno, the local authority working together with the security forces and the pro-autonomy groups often slaughter cows and give away part of the meat to the people, especially those who have shown support to the autonomy plan. In this kind of event the high officials usually will give a speech regarding the superiority of the autonomy plan and ask the people to vote for accepting the plan at the upcoming ballot. They also slander the pro-independence group as those who can only talk but have nothing to offer. This practice is very much related to the misuse of the Social Safety Net fund which will be described further below.
III. SECURITY MATTERS
As is already known, the security matter is the most disturbing aspect of the New York Agreement. The UN lent such great trust and authority to the TNI and Polri even when it was proven several days before the agreement was signed that the security personnel were involved in violent actions against the people, and tended to ignore the violence committed by the pro-autonomy militias. The Indonesian forces, refusing to fulfill the neutral stand expected of it, began violating the agreement within days of its signing.
On various occasions, the Indonesian government has denied its relationship with the pro-autonomy militias and claimed that the violence in East Timor is part of a "civil war." However, much evidence, including that presented in this report, shows that there is a clear relationship between the two forces. In the following sections we will describe several important matters to be noted with regards to the security of East Timor toward the ballot.
1. Killing and other forms of violence
Throughout May and June 1999, the Independent Committee received dozens of reports about killings and other forms of violence. They were usually related to the preparation process for the ballot. In many cases, members of the TNI were either directly involved in the acts of violence, or allowed the militias to commit the acts without challenge. One instance was the killing of three people in Fatubolo village, sub-district Hatolia, district Ermera by members of the Territorial Battalion (BTT) 142, Red Blood Integration and Pancasila Militia groups. Two of the victims, Floriano de Araujo (38) and Afonso (28), were shot in their own houses. Silverio (22), was stabbed with a knife and other sharp weapons until he died at the schoolyard of the Leorema elementary school, sub-district Hatolia. The militia claimed that they killed these three people because they were pro-independence activists who were on the list of wanted people (DPO).
The victims of the killings and acts of violence are usually accused to be pro-independence activists or supporters of the Falintil guerrillas. However, in some cases, security personnel did not identify the victim accurately. For instance, Domingos Gustavo (60) in village Dato, sub-district Liquiça, was arbitrarily shot on May 28, 1999 when he was in the coffee plantation by a member of BTT 143. The Chief of the Information Office of the Police Headquarters in East Timor made a statement later that the victim was shot because the officials "incorrectly glanced" at the victim and thought that he was a Falintil guerrilla. The victim suffered serious injuries and had to be treated at the Wira Husada hospital for three days.
Other forms of violence, such as kidnappings, arbitrary arrests and detentions, and tortures during detention are constantly perpetrated both by members of the militia groups and the TNI and Polri. Though they are violating the Indonesian law itself, the members of the militia groups appear to have received the authority to arrest and detain people. On May 17, 1999 in Ulmera village, sub-district Bazartete, district Liquiça, six members of the Red and White Iron Rod Militia arrested Tereza dos Santos (26) at her house because they said that her husband ran away to the jungle to join the guerrillas. While in detention, the victim repeatedly suffered sexual harassment. In other cases, detainees experienced life-threatening physical abuse.
2. The dissolution of the CNRT and harassment of pro-independence supporters
Terror campaigns have been waged against the CNRT and other pro-independence supporters. In district Ambeno on May 1, 1999, the activists of the local CNRT branch announced that they had dissolved their branch. In their written statement, they stated that the CNRT has committed political errors that caused prolonged conflict among the East Timorese themselves. The ceremony for the dissolution of the organization was attended by the local authorities, community and traditional figures, and the Chief War Commander of the Pro-Integration, Joao da Silva Tavares. At the same time, there was an inauguration of the FPDK Ambeno branch which was marked with drinking animal's blood as a sign of loyalty to the red and white and the formation of the civil defence squad, Pamswakarsa.
According to the newspaper report, the activists of the CNRT dissolved their branch organization voluntarily. Yet, on May 2, 1999 the Sakunar Militia under the leadership of Simao Lopes was looking for seven branch members who had joined the 'voluntary' dissolution. The seven people fled their village to Dili and in their oral confession said that the statement for dissolution of the CNRT was actually drafted by Simao Lopes and the reading of the statement was done under coercion. A similar incident happened in district Bobonaro and Ermera. In Ermera, the dissolution of the organization was marked with the murder of one of the activists of the CNRT, Antonio de Lima.
3. List of Wanted People
One method of terror and intimidation is circulating a List of Wanted People (DPO). Usually, the police use this list to find criminals. But in this case, the list consists of names and addresses of the people who are suspected to be supporters of independence. The members of the militia as well as the local security officials carry this list around, and on various occasion they read the list of names in public and ask the people to look for and arrest the people listed. On May 11, 1999, people from village Leorema, sub-district Bazartete, district Liquica, were told to gather at the village authority office where a member of the Red and White Iron Rod Militia, Miguel, and the secretary of the village office, Anacleto Correia, mentioned three names who were allegedly pro-independence supporters and ordered the villagers to look for, capture, and kill them.
4. Looting Property
Attacks on civilian homes committed by the pro-autonomy militia, either accompanied by the Indonesian security forces or not, are usually followed by the looting of the victim's property. On May 1, 1999, in village Mota Ulun, sub-district Maubara, district Liquiça, the Red and White Iron Rod Militia attacked the house of Paul Diaz (55) to look for his son, Santiago Diaz (17), who was accused to be a supporter of independence. Because the person they were looking for was not around, the militia began to destroy and loot the goods in the house, such as money saved inside the cupboard, television, clothing, even shoes owned by the family. Paul Diaz was very sick during the incident, and was unable to do stop the looters; he could only stand by and watch.
In mass attacks on certain villages, members of the militias, often accompanied by the TNI and Polri officials, also loot people's possessions. It is difficult to gather data about the losses these victims have suffered because in many cases the victims have left the village, and even if they return, they only find the ruins of their houses.
5. Disturbances toward the Humanitarian and Human Rights workers
The targets of violent attacks by the militia and the security forces include humanitarian and human rights workers. In village Com, sub-district Moro, district Lautem, on May 17, 1999, Iskandar dos Santos (24) became a victim of beatings. The victim, who was actively involved in the Volunteer Team for Humanity in Dili, was beaten by Fernando Telo, a member of Kodim Lautem and Tim Alfa militia.
Similar incidents were also experienced by several humanitarian workers when they transported supplies for the refugees in the western side of East Timor. One notorious case was the confiscation of the supplies on May 30, 1999 in village Leorema, sub-district Bazartete, district Liquiça. The supplies, in the form of food and daily necessities, were being transported by Norberto Gonsalves dos Santos (43), a staff member of Etadep Foundation. They were to be distributed to 48 families in village Asumanu, district Liquiça. On the way to the location, this expedition was stalled by members of BTT 143, a member of Liquiça Regional People's Representatives Council, Jacinto, an ex-local authority official, the village chief, Armando Gonsalves, and an official from Kodim Liquiça. The aid workers were forced to turn over the supplies, accused to be couriers taking information back to Dili, and threatened with death.
IV. THE USE OF FUNDS AND FACILITIES OWNED BY THE INDONESIAN GOVERNMENT
In the Annex II regarding the modalities of the popular consultation, in item E-c, it is said that officials from the Indonesian and Portugal government will not participate in the campaign to support either one of the options offered to the East Timorese; and that East Timorese officials can join the campaign only in their personal capacity. It is also emphasized that the use of public funds and government resources for campaigning are not justified. Yet, evidence shows that there is a direct involvement of the Indonesian government officials, and the use of public funds and government resources to support the special autonomy package.
One document that the press has reported upon and is known to the UNAMET office is the proposal for the socialization of the special autonomy package drafted by the Head of Manufahi District, Nazario Jose Tilman de Andrade. In this document, the Director and Treasurer of the Project of Supporting Fund for the Social Safety Net (SSN) are said to be involved. The SSN project is part of the World Bank program which in Indonesia itself has become a problem because the SSN funds are being misused to finance the campaign of the Golkar party in several areas of Indonesia. The document also shows the involvement of the local government, including the head of the sub-district and the village head, TNI personnel, including the Commander of Kodim, Territorial Battalion, Sector Commander and Commander of the Tribuana Task Force, and Polri officials, especially the Chief Police. Besides, the document also reveals that there is a fund for pro-autonomy organizations, such as FPDK, BRTT and Clibur, as well as the other militias that have committed acts of terror and intimidation.
In the budget plan, it is said that the socialization of the autonomy package includes financing the traditional ceremonies for Rp. 145 million (US$ 20,000), supplying basic necessities for Rp. 200 million (US$ 30,000) and repairing houses for Rp. 200 million. It is clear that the Social Safety Net program from the Indonesian government - which according to the agreement should be neutral and not to mobilize its officials to support one option - is being manipulated for the "socialization of the special autonomy package" activities. Furthermore, it is obvious from the budget plan that the highest amount - Rp. 700 million (US$ 100 thousand) - is allocated for Controlling Command (Kodal) which involves the head of sub-district, district, village head, and security personnel (TNI and Polri) in the specified region. The document also confirms many reports about the "socialization of the autonomy plan" that involve local government officials, TNI and Polri. Thus, it can be assumed that the activities described in part II above are financed by this fund.
Other evidence which has been made public by the press, and is known and verified by the UNAMET, is the governor's decree to all territorial offices in East Timor to set aside 10-20% of their budgets to win the special autonomy package. This is very worrisome because the newspaper at the same time reported that several departments of the local government lack funds to carry out the development program.
>From several localities, we have received reports of civil servants threatened with dismissal who appear not to support the autonomy plan. In Ambeno, a number of civil servants were transferred to district Bobonaro as a special support to the office there. This threat affects all civil servants from the head of the sub-district to regular officials. In Dili, after the militia attack on April 17, 1999 there was a confiscation of vehicles and other facilities granted by the local government to the civil servants because the militia assumed these civil servants were independence supporters. In Same, the Commander of Kodim threatened every civil servant "not to do anything unusual" and advised them to resign if they did not support the autonomy plan. This attempt to cleanse the bureaucracy can be seen as part of the terror and intimidation campaign to win the autonomy plan in East Timor.
V. THE PROBLEM OF REFUGEES AND POLITICAL PRISONERS
One impact of the distressing security conditions is the increasing number of the internally displaced persons. (For the sake of convenience, they will be called refugees.) There are different estimates as to the numbers of the refugees in all East Timor. The Office of the Social Department of East Timor estimates that the number of refugees in East Timor and in part of West Timor is around 18,000 people. The UNAMET Team in its initial investigation found 20,078, while an independent organization, Caritas in Dili, gives 52,000 as its number. It is indeed difficult to arrive at a precise number due to the obstacles in investigation and data gathering in those areas.
These refugees were created as a result of the attacks on unarmed civilians by the militias and the security forces. In mid-November 1998, the TNI launched a massive attack against people at sub-district Alas, district Same. This attack was said to be a revenge toward the people because the security forces failed to find the murderer of a Koramil soldier in that sub-district. In December 1998, the TNI launched another military operation in sub-district Cailaco, district Bobonaro, to arrest pro-independence people. About 2,000 people were forced to flee their homes to Maliana Church/ They only returned to their villages three weeks later.
The pro-autonomy militias began to get involved in the terror in January 1999, when the Mahidi Militia terrorized the people in sub-district Zumalai, district Covalima. About 6,000 people fled their homes and took refuge in Suai church for three weeks. This attack was followed by another attack from Laksaur Merah Putih Militia sub-district Tilomar, district Covalima in mid February. In district Liquiça, the Red and White Iron Rod Militia has, since January, intimidated the people and caused about 8,000 people to seek refuge - they have actually come under the surveillance of the militia and not found refuge at all. Until May, the terror and intimidation continued in districts Bobonaro, Ermera and Ainaro. Thousands more fled their homes and sought safer places elsewhere.
According to the report by the National Commission of Anti-Violence against Women which conducted an investigation in several refugee camps, the majority of the refugees are women and children. They live in desperate conditions, lacking decent housing, food and medication. These refugees are prone to diseases such as diarrhoea, fever, eye infection, influenza, and tuberculosis, especially since the sanitation facilities are very limited, at times non-existent. In several places, especially in Liquiça, the refugees live under the surveillance of the militia. They live like captives of the militias. The commission's report also said that there are cases of violence against the women refugees and captives. Several cases of rape have been reported but can not yet be verified due to the tight guard under which the refugees are being kept by the pro-autonomy militias.
The existence of a serious refugee problem clearly contradicts the New York agreement, which states that the popular consultation must happen in an open and just manner. Polri, entrusted to maintain the security of the territory, has not taken any actions to return the refugees to their original places and create peaceful conditions for the population. In this kind of situation, it is almost impossible for the refugees to follow the preparations for the ballot and freely vote the day of the ballot. Besides, the refugee camps under the control of the militias might well facilitate the infiltration of illegal voters and other kinds of fraud during the registration period. Regardless of the vote scheduled for August, the most serious problem now is the safety of the refugees themselves who are in the hands of militias that have perpetrated killing, terror and intimidation.
Another problem which does not get enough attention is the fate of the political prisoners and detainees both inside and outside East Timor. The head of CNRT and the chief commander of the Falintil, Xanana Gusmao, is still a political prisoner despite pressure from different parties to release him. He is detained in a special detention house in Salemba area, Jakarta. In Semarang prison, Raimundo das Neves, is serving a ten year sentence and Gregorio da Cunha Saldanha is serving a life sentence. Meanwhile, in Kalisosok prison, Surabaya, there are 15 political prisoners with sentences between 9 and 13 years. In May there was a report that a number of detainees from East Timor are in Nusakambangan prison, but this information can not be verified due to the restricted access of a human rights organization to visit the prison and to collect data.
In East Timor itself there are 20 political prisoners in Becora prison, Dili, Balide Military Detention House in Dili, Maliana Detention House, Baucau Detention House and Manatuto Detention House. Some of them were sentenced to death, but then later sentence to life in prison, such as Luis Maria de Fatima and Francisco da Costa in Baucau Detention House. Besides there are a number of political detainees who have not been legally processed even though their detention time has passed its limit. The number might reach hundreds, if one counts those who were arbitrarily arrested in detained without legal procedure. The place of detention varies from jails in police stations, TNI headquarters, and guard posts scattered all over East Timor. Several of them are even detained by the militia in houses turned into headquarters.
The treatment towards the detainees and prisoners is very distressing too. In the process of investigation they often suffer from torture and other inhuman treatment. Francisco da Silva, who was charged with involvement in the case of an attack against Mobil Brigade (Brimob) headquarters on May 28, 1997, was stripped naked when he was taken from the Wira Husada hospital to the headquarters of the Regional Police. After being sentenced, the prisoners often suffer from torture by the security personnel such as what happened to Rainaldo Marcal in Balide Detention House, Dili. The situation in the unofficial detention houses mentioned above is very apprehensive. There are many reports saying that those who were detained died or disappeared after being tortured.
Considering the conditions described above it can be assured that the ballot scheduled for August 8, 1999 will not happen in a free, open and fair manner. Almost every clause of the agreement between Indonesia and Portugal was violated within days after the signing. Based upon the investigation conducted by the Independent Committee for Monitoring the Ballot, the most serious problem is security, now entrusted to the Indonesian Police. As we have seen, the Polri does not take any firm action against the violations and in several places is even involved in committing violence toward the civilians. Without a clear regulation and sanction against the violations, the situation in East Timor will not significantly change before the ballot.
The presence of the militia since December 1998 is one most distressing aspects related to the security matter. There has been overwhelming evidence presented by human rights organizations, foreign and national press outlets, and UNAMET officials and staff themselves, concerning the violence committed by the militias. Several days ago, the representative of UNAMET, Ian Martin, became a victim himself when he was blocked by the militia on his way to carry out his duty. Until now, there has not been any firm action by Polri against the militias. This clearly violates the Indonesian Criminal Code (KUHP) and regulations regarding the ownership of automatic weapon by civilians. How the government handles the militia was clearly shown when the government changed the status of the militia into the Civil Defence Squad (Pamswakarsa) in May. This decision was a legalization to the terror and intimidation committed by the militias.
Meanwhile the level of life of the East Timorese in general and the refugees in particular has deteriorated due to the violations mentioned above. In such conditions, it is impossible for the people to determine their choice during the ballot - a ballot which is supposed to determine much about their future.
Based upon the explanations and conclusions above, the Independent Committee for Monitoring the Ballot - a free and fair one - would like to present the following recommendations:
1. UNAMET and the UN Human Rights Commission should immediately conduct a thorough investigation on the violations of the agreement and human rights conditions in East Timor. The perpetrator of the violations, especially those of human rights, should be arrested and brought to trial and processed under the law. 2. The Secretary General of the United Nations should formulate a clear sanction against the violators of the agreement and establish a mechanism as well as prepare the devices to implement the sanction.
Without firm and immediate action to overcome the violations mentioned above, we are certain that the popular consultation will not happen in a free and fair manner as we all hope it will be.
Dili, 21 June 1999
"TIDAK ADA DEMOKRASI DI INDONESIA TANPA PEMBEBASAN DI TIMOR TIMUR"
FORTILOS Forum Solidaritas Untuk Rakyat Timor Timur
Forum Solidaritas untuk Rakyat Timor Timur (FORTILOS) dibentuk oleh sebelas lembaga dan enam individu pada tanggal 11 Maret 1998. Forum ini bekerja dengan komitmen menegakkan hak-hak asasi manusia dan menghargai hak rakyat Timor Timur untuk menentukan nasib sendiri, serta mendorong tercapainya penyelesaian masalah Timor Timur yang adil dan damai. Forum ini berangkat dari Pembukaan UUD 1945, "bahwa kemerdekaan adalah hak segala bangsa" serta Pernyataan Semesta Hak-hak Asasi Manusia yang menegaskan hak-hak semua bangsa untuk menentukan nasib sendiri.
Jl. Siaga II No.31, Pejaten Barat, Jakarta 12510, Indonesia Telp. (021) 7919-2763 Fax. (021) 7919-2519 Hp. 0812-9188047 e-mail: email@example.com