Subject: AFP: Suharto crony company stops Timor timber operations: report
Date: Sat, 20 Mar 1999 09:16:15 -0500
From: "John M. Miller" <>

Received from Joyo:

Suharto crony company stops Timor timber operations: report

JAKARTA, March 16 (AFP) - A timber firm part owned by the closest business associate of fallen president Suharto has stopped operations in East Timor because of rising tensions there, a report said Tuesday.

Work had ground to a halt at PT Fendi Hutani Lestari, 40 percent owned by the state-run firm PT Inhutani I and 60 percent by Mohamad "Bob" Hasan's company PT Fendi Indah, the Jakarta Post said, quoting a senior forestry official.

"The company reported that two of its employees had been killed while many others were attacked in the past months," forestry ministry director general of forest utilisation Waskito Soerjodibroto said.

After the killings, the rest of the employees felt insecure about working on the 40,000 hectare (98,000 acre) timber estate, he said.

In the Viqueque area of East Timor, the estate was established in 1996, with the aim of rehabilitating the forest and land, and to provide job opportunities.

Tensions have been rising and hundreds of Indonesian settlers have left East Timor since Jakarta said in January the former Portuguese colony, invaded by Indonesian troops in 1975 could choose between broad autonomy or independence.

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