Subject: E.Timor Votes Overwhelmingly To Break Its Ties With Indon
Date: Fri, 3 Sep 1999 21:36:13 EDT

Associated Press AP-NY-09-03-99 2115EDT

E.Timorese Choose Independence

East Timor Votes Overwhelmingly To Break Its Ties With Indonesia in Favor of Independence

UNITED NATIONS (AP) - East Timor voted overwhelmingly to break its ties with Indonesia in favor of independence, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan announced Friday night.

More than 23 years after Indonesia invaded the former Portuguese colony, the voters rejected wide-ranging autonomy within Indonesia by 78.5 percent, he said.

``There are no winners or losers,'' Annan told a hushed open meeting of the U.N. Security Council.

East Timor will not become independent immediately.

Indonesia's legislature must implement the result of the ballot, and it is not expected to meet until November. Then, Indonesia would turn over responsibility for East Timor to the United Nations.

Jose Ramos Horta, East Timor's Nobel Peace Prize winner and independence leader, has said the United Nations should run the territory during a three-year transition to independence.

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