BACK DOOR Newsletter on East Timor .........home ...... Nov items

"NOVEMBER 12 marks the tenth anniversary of one of the most infamous massacres in East Timor. On November 12, 1991, the Indonesian military indiscriminately fired upon East Timorese participants in a memorial procession-turned-peaceful pro-independence demonstration in the Santa Cruz cemetery in Dili. Over 270 civilians were killed. This massacre, unlike many others during the U.S.-backed Indonesian military occupation, was recorded and reported on by international journalists. News of the atrocity sparked an international solidarity movement for East Timor." ETAN Washington Representative Karen Orenstein
See also:

BD: Current Urgent Actions
BD: War Crimes & Crimes Against Humanity
BD: Calls for International War Crimes Tribunal

Action Alert: Call for Justice for East Timor

Action Alert: Honor the Santa Cruz massacre victims

East Timor Action Network / U.S.

Support justice for East Timor!

Commemorate the tenth anniversary of the Santa Cruz massacre by acting for human rights!

NOVEMBER 12 marks the tenth anniversary of one of the most infamous massacres in East Timor.


Contents:
*** What You Can Do *** [U.S. Actions]
Background
Sample e-mail/ fax to U.S. Congressional offices
Some U.S. Events on November 12




*** What You Can Do ***

Make three phone calls to your members of Congress on November 13 to 15!

When you talk to your Representative’s and Senators’ offices:

·       Ask them to sign on to the congressional letter to U.S. Secretary of State Powell, marking the tenth anniversary of the Santa Cruz massacre and urging the Bush administration to actively and publicly work for the establishment of an international tribunal for East Timor. The House version is being circulated by Congressmen Lane Evans (D-IL) and Frank Wolf (R-VA). House offices should contact Kevin Gash in Mr. Evans’ office at 202-225-5905 to sign on. The Senate version is being circulated by Senator Paul Wellstone (D-MN). Senate offices should contact Brian Hanleyat at 202-224-5641 to sign on. The deadline to sign on to the letter is Friday, November 16. For letter text, contact Karen Orenstein (karen@etan.org or 202-544-6911).

·       Urge them to co-sponsor congressional resolutions calling for an international tribunal for crimes against humanity committed in East Timor, House Concurrent Resolution 60 and Senate Concurrent Resolution 9, “Condemning the Violence in East Timor and Urging the Establishment of an International War Crimes Tribunal for Prosecuting Crimes Against Humanity That Occurred During That Conflict”. For a list of current co-sponsors, see http://www.etan.org/legislation

·       For members of Congress who have already co-sponsored the resolution, thank them and ask them to personally let the State Department and National Security Council know of their support for an international tribunal for East Timor.

Contact the Washington office of your Representative and Senators and ask to speak with the foreign policy staff person. All offices can be reached through the Congressional Switchboard at 202-224-3121. To find out who represents you, visit http://www.congress.org

(See sample letter below.)




Background

NOVEMBER 12 marks the tenth anniversary of one of the most infamous massacres in East Timor. On November 12, 1991, the Indonesian military indiscriminately fired upon East Timorese participants in a memorial procession-turned-peaceful pro-independence demonstration in the Santa Cruz cemetery in Dili. Over 270 civilians were killed. This massacre, unlike many others during the U.S.-backed Indonesian military occupation, was recorded and reported on by international journalists. News of the atrocity sparked an international solidarity movement for East Timor. The East Timor Action Network formed to educate the public, challenge U.S. foreign policy and end our government’s complicity in the genocide of the East Timorese people. Former foreign minister of Indonesia Ali Alatas has called the Dili massacre the “turning point” which set in motion the events leading to 1999’s referendum and East Timor’s coming independence.

Ten years later, our work is still not done. Today, one-tenth of the East Timorese people are held in militia and military-controlled refugee camps in Indonesian territory, under horrendous conditions. No members of the Indonesian military or police have been brought to trial for 1999’s devastating violence  or for the prior 24 years of brutal occupation.  Although East Timor is free and will soon be independent, your support is still needed!

The Indonesian military and its militia proxies razed East Timor following the August 1999 referendum for independence, murdering thousands, raping hundreds of women and girls, forcing some 300,000 people into Indonesian West Timor and destroying over 75% of the country’s infrastructure. The January 2000 reports of the United Nations International Commission of Inquiry on East Timor and the Indonesian government’s own human rights commission state the Indonesian military is responsible for these crimes against humanity. The UN report further called for the establishment of an international tribunal. Today, no Indonesian military or police have yet been held responsible by the Indonesian government for these heinous abuses, and some 80,000 East Timorese remain trapped in militia-and military-controlled Indonesian refugee camps. Recent reports from Jesuit Refugee Services, the only international agency with a regular presence in the camps, noted the “generally very poor” condition of the refugees’ health and “continued intimidation in the camps”. Increased international pressure must be applied NOW, to support nation-building in East Timor and rule of law in Indonesia, and to allow the one-tenth of the East Timorese population still under Indonesian occupation in squalid refugee camps to return home.

Thank you for your support! Your efforts do make a difference.

Please let ETAN Washington Representative Karen Orenstein know the results of your calls, at 202-544-6911 or karen@etan.org




Sample e-mail/ fax to Congressional offices

Congressional e-mail addresses and fax numbers are available at: http://www.congress.org

- - - - - -

Dear Senator /Representative,

12 November 2001

Dear _________,

Today marks the tenth anniversary of one of the most brutal massacres of East Timorese civilians by the Indonesian military. Over 270 East Timorese children, women and men were killed on November 12, 1991 in the capital of Dili for participating in a peaceful protest against Indonesian rule.

The illegal Indonesian occupation of East Timor has ended, and East Timor will become fully independent next year. However, no Indonesian military or police have been brought to trial for a quarter century of horrific human rights abuses, and today approximately one-tenth of the East Timorese population remains held in militia- and military-controlled Indonesian refugee camps.

I am writing to urge you to honor the victims of the Santa Cruz massacre and to uphold international human rights standards by:

·       Signing on to a joint House/ Senate Congressional letter to U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, marking the tenth anniversary of the Santa Cruz massacre, calling for an international tribunal for East Timor as a fitting tribute to the Santa Cruz massacre victims and urging the U.S. to support a just resolution to East Timor’s refugee crisis. The letter is being circulated by Congressmen Lane Evans and Frank Wolf in the House (contact Kevin Gash in Mr. Evans’ office at 202-225-5905 to sign on) and by Senator Paul Wellstone in the Senate (contact Brian Hanley at 202-224-5641 to sign on).

·       Co-sponsoring (House Concurrent Resolution 60 or Senate Concurrent Resolution 9), which calls for an international tribunal for crimes against humanity committed in East Timor, as called for by United Nations commissions, East Timorese Nobel laureate Bishop Belo, and many others in East Timor and internationally.

·       For any members of Congress who have already co-sponsored the resolution: Communicating to the State Department and National Security Council (the Rep’s/Sen’s) support for an international tribunal for East Timor, as shown by (her/his) co-sponsorship of (HConRes60 or SenConRes9).

I thank you for your attention to these important issues, [thank Sen/Rep ______ if they have already co-sponsored HConRes60 or SConRes9] and would appreciate your informing me of the actions (Rep/Sen) _________ takes on these matters.

Sincerely,
 




Some Events on November 12:

WASHINGTON, DC: Vigil at Indonesian Embassy, 2020 Massachusetts Ave.  NW at 5 pm (The nearest Metro stop is Dupont circle (Q st entrance) which is two blocks away. For more information call East Timor Action Network at 202-544-6911 or Nate at 202-234-1325.)

NEW YORK CITY: Forum on the Santa Cruz Massacre with Amy Goodman, Constancio Pinto and Michael Ratner. 7:30 pm: School of Blessed Sacrament 147 W 70th St. (btn. Columbus and Broadway), Manhattan. Contact: 718-596-7668.


John M. Miller         Internet: john@etan.org
Media & Outreach Coordinator, East Timor Action Network
48 Duffield St., Brooklyn, NY 11201 USA
Phone: (718)596-7668      Fax: (718)222-4097
Mobile phone: (917)690-4391
Web site: http://www.etan.org

Send a blank e-mail message to info@etan.org  to find out how to learn more about East Timor on the Internet

East Timor Action Network U.S.  Updated May 19
ETAN/US was founded following the November 1991 massacre. ETAN/US supports a genuine and peaceful transition to an independent East Timor. It also supports human dignity for the people of East Timor by advocating for democracy, sustainable development, social, legal, and economic justice and human rights, including women’s rights.
East Timor was invaded and subjugated by US ally Indonesia in 1975. East Timor chose independence in August 1999 and was soon destroyed by the Indonesian military. It is now administered by the UN.
ETAN/US provides a wide range of articles, news reports and press releases related to East Timor. ETAN has 28 local chapters. Email: etan@etan.org & info@etan.org  Homepage: http://www.etan.org
East Timor info on the ETAN site is added daily.


See also:

BD: Current Urgent Actions

BD: War Crimes & Crimes Against Humanity - A collection of recent press releases, petitions, articles and news

BD: Calls for International War Crimes Tribunal - A collection of recent reports, articles and news


BACK DOOR Newsletter on East Timor .........home ...... Nov items
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