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Resolution adopted by the 72nd General Convention of the Episcopal Church, held July 16-25, 1997 in Philadelphia.


East Timor: Support Bishop Belo

Resolved, the House of __ concurring, That the 72nd General Convention send greetings and congratulations to Carlos Felipe Ximenes Belo, bishop of the Roman Catholic diocese of East Timor, in recognition of his receipt of the Nobel Prize for 1996 as well as his co-worker, Jose  Ramos-Horta; and be it further

Resolved, That the Episcopal Church support the work of Bishop Belo toward a just and peaceful solution to the conflict in East Timor.

Explanation - In 1975, Indonesia invaded East Timor using United States weapons and with the consent of President Ford and Secretary Henry Kissinger after Portugal's withdrawal from the region. This action was illegal and has not been recognized by any international body nor by the United States. Out of a population of only 700,000, over 100,000 persons were killed in the invasion and another 100,000 died in the years immediately following from starvation, disease, war, and terror. Five years ago Indonesian soldiers massacred over a hundred persons while they were leading a peaceful funeral procession. The reign of terror continues to this day. Bishop Belo, at the risk of his own life, has been a spokesman for his people and has continually tried to keep the peace by dialogue and non-violence.

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