[See headline below on the failure of reconciliation talks between the people’s representatives from Ainaro and former militia leader Cansio Lopez: Cansio Lopez Has To Be Treated With Caution - BD]
It is true that the Salele-Suai meeting was cancelled because Cancio Carvalho could not come. And the hasty statement of the UNTAET staff, who had been negotiating with the people of Ainaro on the one hand, and Cancio and others in West Timor on the other hand, demonstrates as always, the arrogance and over-ambition of UNTAET staff. The basic problem is with UNTAET itself. The agenda for the public hearing, that UNTAET conducted with about 20 persons from Ainaro, is not to discuss whether Cancio et al. can return or not. In fact, the intention of these public meetings of the last few months has not been to make a decision concerning Cancio et al.
UNTAET asked the people attending the meetings what their personal opinions were. But since then, UNTAET as usual, generalizes that the people of Ainaro want Cancio et al to return and would receive them back.
All this while, UNTAET has been informing the Timorese that it is organizing the meeting with Cancio et al., that it is ascertaining the desires of the people of Ainaro - of which UNTAET's summation is that they are ready to receive Cancio et al. Now that the meeting is cancelled - what should the people of Ainaro know? This question leads us to analyse the fact that often "other people" have used opportunities in international missions, including UNTAET, to carry out their private interest and ambition. The Timorese people recognize the presence of the UNTAET international community and its contribution in East Timor, but they do not want an international mission where interested persons, groups or nations bring suffering to the people.
This has already happened. From now on, Timorese have to start to show to the world, especially the international community working with us here, that Timorese have the capacity to be working partners and to resolve problems among themselves. They do not need other people who come in the name of the "world" and do unsatisfactory work. In the case of the cancellation of the Salele meeting, the heavy responsibility lies on Mr. Nagalingam Parameswaran, Chief of Staff of UNTAET. Today, he cannot sleep well as his strategy 'in the name' of the people of Ainaro has fallen through - the people of Ainaro are waiting for Mr. Parameswaran to explain to them. This question we also need to ask UNTAET staff: Cancio et al. want to meet with the people of Ainaro or with UNTAET? Why did Cancio cancel this meeting? Cancio knows that he needs to sit and talk together with the people of Ainaro - against whom he had been fighting but with whom he would have to live in partnership in the future - not with Mr. Parameswaram who in the year ahead would go back to his own country.
Tuesday 21 February 2001
The failure of Monday’s reconciliation talks between the people’s representatives from Ainaro and former militia leader Cansio Lopez and his followers, in the town of Salele in Suai, has disappointed deeply the people of Ainaro.
The Ainaro people were of the view that the non-attendance of Cansio and his followers went against their good intentions and UNTAET’s efforts to initiate reconciliation. Because of this, the political feelers put out by Cansio and his followers should be treated with suspect.
The National Council member from Ainaro, Alexander Xavier Araujo, said the Ainaro people waited for six hours, at Salele, for Cansio and his followers to show up. In the end, he said, they felt deeply disappointed when the meeting was cancelled.
According to Xavier, for the Ainaro people reconciliation was very important to revive the feeling of cooperation and togetherness among themselves.
“The people have decided to put behind them the murders and pillage but look at what has happened. Their good intentions have amounted to nothing,” said Xavier.
In future talks, Xavier said, the Ainro people would not go to the border at Salele, Suai. Instead, he said, Cansio and his followers must come to Ainaro and talk directly to them.
Jun 21 2000 Y-HAK: Lopes: Rekonciliasaun Housi Lei Nia Roman
"Ita tenke rekonhece katak, ho hahalok at sira hanesan haterus no injustisa ne’ebe mosu, hamosu sofrimento fisiku no psikologiku ne’ebe wa’in tebes. Hahalok sira ne’e hanesan sama povu Timor Lorosa’e nia dignidade. Buat sira ne’e, sai problema ne’ebe serio tebes no tenke buka resolve atu hadia fali dignidade povu Timor Lorosa’e nudar ema no nudar Povu ida. ... tenke hanoin katak justisa la bele hari wainhira la iha lia los (verdade). Tan ne’e, importante tebes atu loke fakto sira kona ba violasaun no injustisa molok haka’as an atu hetan solusaun tuir mekanismu atu hametin lei ka mekanismu seluk tan. Ne’e katak, tenke bazeia ba lia los. Karik lae, justisa ne’ebe ita hetan justisa ne’ebe falsu no namlele hela." Aniceto Guterres Lopes, Direktor, Yayasan HAK
Jun 21 2000
Y-HAK: Lopes: Reconciliation from a Legal Perspective
"We must admit that these various forms of oppression and injustice [murder, rape, torture, displacement, burning and looting property] resulted in extraordinary physical and spiritual suffering. In addition, these experiences undermined East Timorese values and culture. This is a serious matter that we must handle in order to return self worth to the people of East Timor as well as to enhance national unity. ... we cannot build justice without truth. It is important to express the facts of violations and injustice before trying to achieve solutions realized through various mechanisms, legal or otherwise." Aniceto Guterres Lopes, Director, Yayasan HAK