BACK DOOR Newsletter on East

BACK DOOR Newsletter on East Timor

December 2000 News, Articles & Reports:

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Boletim La’o Hamutuk: [PDF formatu]
Vol. 1, No. 4, 31 Dejembru 2000
Banku Mundial iha Timor Loro Sa’e:

Dej 31 BLH: Demokrasia ho Banku Mundial iha Timor Loro Sa’e  Editorial added May 18
"Eksperiensia hatudu katak presaun públika bele influensia oin sa Banku hala’o nia seruisu iha nasaun partikular ruma. Maski susar, Timor Loro Sa’e sorte ona hodi iha sektor ONG nebe iha korajen, elite politik nebe relativamente responsivu ba kuantidadi ka ema sira nebe hili iha baje (grassroot constituency), no movimentu solidaridadi internasional ida nebe forte. Hola hamutuk ba, faktor sira ne’e bele halo diferensa atu bele garante katak Banku Mundial serve necesidadi Timor oan sira nian, du ke nia kontráriu." La’o Hamutuk, Instituto Timor Lorosa’e ba Analiza no Monitoring Reconstrucao

Dec 31 LHB: Democracy and the World Bank in East Timor  Editorial updated Feb 26
"Experience shows that concerted public pressure can influence how the [World] Bank works. East Timor has a vibrant NGO sector, a political elite that is relatively responsive to grassroots constituencies, and a strong international solidarity movement. Working together, they can help ensure that the World Bank serves the East Timorese people’s needs, rather than vice-versa." The La'o Hamutuk Bulletin

Dec 28 IPS: East Timor: Nation-To-Be Goes From Euphoria To Pragmatism  Added Dec 31

Dec 26 Público: The UN's neo-colonial vision of Timor  Interview added Jan 5 2001
"The UN is divided between the exotic scenario of Spielberg's Indiana Jones series and the 'political correctness' of US academic thinking, and this combination gives rise to a somewhat neo-colonial approach". Pedro Bacelar de Vasconcelos

Dec 25 CNRT: Mary Christmas and a Happy New Year!  Added Dec 25

Dec 24 Age: East Timor - Silent Shame, Silent Witness  Added Dec 24

Dec 23 AFP: Indonesia postpones registration of East Timorese refugees  Added Dec 24

Dec 23 Age: East Timor's land rights mess  Added Dec 24

Dec 22 OTL: Reconstruir infra-estruturas adaptadas e sustentáveis  Report added Apr 4
"a chegada dum grande número de estrangeiros com necessidades de conforto e capacidades financeiras superiores levou à satisfação prioritária deste sector, ocupando edifícios e casas menos destruídas ou dando-lhe primazia na reconstrução e fornecimento de bens. Mais de um ano depois da chegada das NU, a imensa maioria dos timorenses, sobretudo em Dili, vive em ruínas." Observatório Timor Leste

Dec 22 ETO: Reconstructing suitable sustainable infrastructures  Report added Dec 30
"The large influx of foreigners with different standards of comfort and greater financial capacity has meant that satisfying their needs has become a priority area: they took over the less damaged buildings and houses, and were given priority in reconstruction and supply of materials.  Meanwhile, a year after the UN's arrival, the vast majority of Timorese, especially those in Dili, are still living amidst the ruins." East Timor Observatory

Dec 22 IHT: A Family in East Timor Grieves for a Daughter  Added Dec 22
"Juliana was one of several hundred people sheltering in the grounds of Ave Maria Roman Catholic church in Suai when it was attacked by Indonesian security forces and their Laksaur militia proxies in an unprovoked assault on Sept. 6, 1999, that left as many as 200 people dead, including three priests. ... The Indonesian government's human rights watchdog, Komnas HAM ... described what happened at the Suai church as indiscriminate killing, with the victims including men, women and children, aged between 5 and 40. In the chaos that followed the worst recorded atrocity after the UN-organized self-determination plebiscite in East Timor, Juliana was separated from her mother and taken to the district military headquarters. It was there that the Laksaur militia deputy leader, Igidio Mnanek, seized the young girl and proclaimed her as his "war prize." " Mark Dodd

Dec 22 ETAN's Annual Report of its activities for 2000  Added Dec 22

Dec 20 SMH: Australia denies UN its secret files of Timor terror  Added Dec 22

Dec 20 AP: UN Investigator Says East Timor Death Toll May Be 2,000 Added Dec 22

Dec 20 Age: Guilty as charged: the Timor verdict  Added Dec 21

Dec 19 ETAN urges U.S. to support International Criminal Court  Added Dec 20

Dec 19 SMH: Hard Grind - Weak coffee prices add to fledgling nation's woes  Added Dec 20
"Income from East Timor's coffee harvest - on which a quarter of the population depends for its basic income - has fallen by up to 35 per cent because of glut on the world market, placing further pressure on the country's devastated economy." Mark Dodd, Herald Correspondent in Dili

Dec 18 CAAT:  Re-build ET coffee economy - Buy Fair Trade Coffee!  Added Dec 23
Upon reading about the recent devastating crash in income from East Timor's coffee harvest BACK DOOR did an extensive web-search for ways that we could respond. And guess what? In several capital cities in Australia there are retail outlets that sell East Timorese coffee at much fairer prices. Buying this fair trade coffee will help to re-build the coffee economy. This coffee can also be purchased on-line!

Dec 18 Reut: Ramos-Horta optimistic, pragmatic on E.Timor future  Added Dec 20

Dec 18 Age: Xanana call for South African-style truth and reconciliation commission  Added Dec 18
"I'm thinking of a process of reconciliation here that can avoid instability in the future and one that people can accept. I will not say no justice, but in a process maybe like South Africa," Jose "Xanana" Gusmao

Dec 13 TimP: Teachers protest to UN  Added Dec 20

Dec 13 SMH: East Timor - Empty Justice  Added Dec 17
"Indonesia is supposed to be bringing suspects to account for some of the worst human rights abuses, including the massacre of priests, women and children sheltering in a church in Suai and the murder of a Dutch journalist, Sander Thoenes. The former armed forces chief, General Wiranto, has been named by Jakarta as "morally responsible", but no charges have been laid or cases mounted. This leaves East Timorese prosecutors with a credible legal process but no significant suspects to try, and Indonesian prosecutors with all the big suspects but no credible process. Jakarta is not willing to extradite suspects to East Timor, and would have serious problems in protecting witnesses in any trial of senior military officers in Indonesia." Editorial, Sydney Morning Herald

Dec 12 Público: Timorese structures secondary  Added Dec 15
"At this stage of the process, it is essential that the Timorese are genuinely involved, and that this involvement focuses on the institutions in which they are represented" Pedro Bacelar de Vasconcelos

Dec 10 ACFOA Position Paper: Negotiations of the Timor Gap Zone of Cooperation  Report updated Jan 18
"... it is critical to ensure that East Timor will have access and make good use of all its resources in order to enable the rehabilitation of its infrastructure and become in the medium term more economically self-sufficient and therefore less dependent on foreign aid. ... The East Timorese should be given a larger share of the oil and gas resources than the one they presently receive under the Timor Gap Treaty." ACFOA

Dec 10 KY: ETimor: 2 ex-sex slaves break silence at NGO tribunal  Added Dec 11
"Two East Timorese women broke over half a century of silence Sunday and told of their ordeals as sex slaves of the Imperial Japanese Army at a mock tribunal to try the Japanese government over its responsibility for the recruitment of so-called ''comfort women'' before and during World War II." Kyodo

Dec 8 RA: World bank says it failed Indonesia's poor  Added Dec 9

Dec 8 DPA: Women demand apology & compensation for War-time Japanese mistreatment  Added Dec 9
"The Japanese government, which failed to respond to the tribunal's invitation to participate in the event, continues to deny any legal responsibility for the suffering of the former comfort women. Sexual violence committed by the Japanese Imperial Army was hardly touched by the 1946-1948 International Military Tribunal for the Far East in Tokyo, set up by the Allied Forces after the war." Deutsche Presse-Agentur

Dec 8 SFChron: Timor Peace Also Has Discontents  Added Dec 9

Dec 7 MB: Horta before Int'l Women's Forum  Added Dec 11

Dec 7 CapT: Village Women of East Timor have great hope  Added Dec 9
"Women were specifically targeted in many ways [after the ballot] -- they were separated from husbands and sons, harassed and often raped. ... Village women work all day long, caring for children, cooking, cleaning, washing, farming and carrying water. ... In their quest for economic empowerment, East Timorese women are fighting more than their country's current poverty -- under customary law, women cannot inherit or own property." Jen Laakso

Dec 5 & 6 Indonesian Press: Several news items relating to East Timorese Refugees  Added Dec 8

Dec 6 Times: Bishops call for international tribunal to try war crimes in East Timor  Added Dec 18
"In Indonesia efforts are being made to set up trials. But the conditions for them to be conducted according to international standards do not exist and are unlikely to in the near future. ... No healing process can start in the knowledge that perpetrators will go unpunished. Justice is vital to East Timor's future, and to the future of Indonesia, which is struggling to found a democratic state based on the rule of law." David Konstant, Bishop of Leeds, Chairman, Catholic Bishops' Conference Department of International Affairs & Richard Harries, Bishop of Oxford

Dec 6 NTT X: Horta: E. Timor's future is also with the "new Indonesia"   Added Dec 11

Dec 6 BBC: Jose Ramos-Horta - 'Delay possible' in East Timor independence  Added Dec 8

Dec 6 GLW: Vital histories of East Timor’s resistance  Added Dec 8

Dec 6 GLW: Australia's oil and gas grab exposed  Added Dec 8
"As the people of East Timor struggle to rebuild their lives and their nation, it remains the case that a major obstacle to achieving full independence and self-determination is the big-business oriented foreign policy of the Australian government."
Jon Land

Dec 5-6 INGO: Report on the Brussels Donors' Meeting on East Timor   Added Dec 20
"The Brussels Donors' Meeting on East Timor worked according to the Goebbels principle of propaganda: 'If you repeat anything often enough and long enough, people will believe it.' By repeating often and at length what a marvellous job the WB, UNTAET and ETTA had done, one presumes everyone except the NGOs/INGOs went away believing this."
Sieneke Martin, INGO representative

Dec 5-6 REDE: Women's Network statement to Brussels donor conferenceAdded Dec 13
"If the goal is a sustainable political and administrative transition than it must be capable of involving the people in the most informed and inclusive manner possible. The transition can not be of the elite, it must be of the people. Timorisation and capacity building have become catch phrases for the current administration, and with reason, as the administration has been almost fully staffed by internationals. However the mistaken perception that there is no Timorese capacity or that there is capacity only amongst a few, and the convenience of talking with a limited elite can not justify jumping over and undermining the institutions being created with such difficulty." Filomena Reis, REDE

Dec 5-6 CNRT/CNP: Brussels donor's meeting - opening speech by the CNRT's rep  Added Dec 7
"The Timorese ... find it hard to understand how, with the resources available, that after nearly one year following the Tokyo Conference, Dili is almost in the same state. A worse scenario, which hurts one's soul to witness, can be seen throughout the rest of the country." Xanana Gusmao

Dec 5 RDP: East Timorese leader criticizes UN Timor officials Added Dec 9

Dec 5 XG: President Xanana Gusmao open letter to East Timorese  Added Dec 7

Dec 5 Lusa: Parties Must Prove They 'Really Prepared' for Independence – Gusma[o]  Added Dec 6

Dec 5 FONGTIL: First East Timorese NGO Forum AGM  Added Dec 6

Dec 5 BLH: Boletim La’o Hamutuk "Hari Sistema Saude Nasional iha Timor Lorosa’e"  Up-dated Dec 26

Dec 5 LHB: Latest Bulletin Online "Building a National Health System for East Timor"  Up-dated Dec 26

Dec 4 COHRE: Housing Rights Ignored in the Reconstruction Added Dec 6
"the East Timorese people eager to re-build their nation. Sadly there is little or no consultation with communities on housing or other issues that affect their lives by the UN. There are about 174 East Timorese NGOs ready to contribute to the development process, yet they are left out of the decision making process. This is frustrating to all involved." Ken Fernandes, COHRE's Asia & Pacific Coordinator

Dec 2 CNRT/NC: Xanana's Resignation Denied Added Dec 5

Dec 2 RDP: Unhappy East Timorese leaders threaten to resign from interim administration

Dec 2 CCET: Christian churches call for justice and peace in East Timor  Updated Dec 5
"No healing process can start in the knowledge that perpetrators are at large, and will go unpunished.  Without healing, East Timor's
unique chance of founding a nation based on higher principles rooted in freedom and equity, will be still-born.  Justice is vital ..."
Christian Consultation on East Timor

Dec 2 TEcon: Timor's troubled waters

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