Subject: Bishop Belo accuses Indonesia of genocide in E.Timor
Date: Fri, 10 Sep 1999 11:25:46 EDT

Biship Belo accuses Indonesia of genocide in E.Timor

LISBON, Sept 10 (AFP) - Nobel laureate Bishop Carlos Belo on Friday accused the Indonesian authorities of committing "genocide" and of "cleansing" East Timor of its population.

Speaking on arrival at Lisbon airport, Belo repeated his plea for an international force to be sent to the province and appealed to the international aid agencies to save the refugees.

"Dili is a city destroyed, completely burned," he said.

Soon there would be nothing left of East Timor but "trees, stones, earth and animals."

"We have to start again from zero, but the most important is to save the refugees," the bisop said.

He called on the United Nations and the Red Cross to help East Timorese who were "wandering about in the mountains without food, water or clothes."

Earlier on a stop-over in London, Belo, the bishop of East Timor's capital Dili, said he had no doubt the killings in East Timor were "orchestrated by the Indonesian top general in Jakarta in order to stop this historical event."

Pro-Indonesian militia went on a bloody rampage in East Timor, Indonesia's only mainly Christian province, after a majority of its residents voted for independence in a UN-organised ballot on August 30.

Belo said Indonesia's generals and militia chiefs should face trial in an international court.

The bishop was smuggled out of East Timor earlier this week after his home came under attack, and left Australia on Thursday for Portugal and the Vatican to plead for international intervention.

Arriving in Lisbon, he was greeted by President Jorge Sampaio and Prime Minister Antonio Guterres.

Crowds of supporters, dressed in white in homage to the people of East Timor, turned out to greet him at the airport and on the route into the city, waving white handkerchiefs and throwing flower petals.

Bishop Belo is due to stay in Lisbon three days, after which he will travel to the Vatican City to brief Pope John Paul II on the situation in East Timor.

Meanwhile East Timorese representatives in Lisbon claimed that a boat carrying Indonesian civilians arrived Friday in Dili from the town of Atambua in the neighbouring province of West Timor.

"The aim of this manoeuvre is to give a normal aspect to the city when representatives of the UN Security Council visit the town on Saturday," the Timorese Commission in Lisbon said.

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