BACK DOOR Newsletter on East Timor     home.........themes ....... search

BACK DOOR Newsletter on East Timor

Truth, Reception and Reconciliation Commission
Komisaun ba Simu, Lia Los no Dame Malu nian
Comissão de Acolhimento, Verdade e Reconciliação
Komisi Penerimaan, Kebenaran dan Rekonsiliasi

New site / Website Foun / Novo site / situs-Web Baru:
Homepage: http://www.easttimor-reconciliation.org/  E-mail: info@easttimor-reconciliation.org

A collection of recent reports, articles and news on the ongoing reconciliation process and the Truth, Reception and Reconciliation Commission. 


Receive FREE weekly email Web-updates: email wildwood@pcug.org.au and include the words "Subscribe BACK DOOR" in the message header. more info
Up-Dated: Feb 14, 2002

NEW = Added to BACK DOOR Website since last Monday's Emailout


Contents:
Contact info  Updated Feb 6, 2002
Overviews  Updated Feb 9, 2002
Reports, Articles and News  Updated Feb 14, 2002




Contact info:

Commission for Reception, Truth & Reconciliation in East Timor
P. O. Box 144
Dili, East Timor
Tel: +61 (0) 407 394 957
E-mail: info@easttimor-reconciliation.org

Joann Kingsley, Information Services
Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation in East Timor
Tel: +670 (390) 312210 ext.4513
Mobile: +61 (0) 407 394 957

CRTR in East Timor: http://www.easttimor-reconciliation.org/




Overviews:

Tetum:
Website Foun
Fev 5 Komisaun ba Simu, Lia Los no Dame Malu nian iha Timor Lorosa'e
Link tau tan 6 Fevreiru 2002; Website iha lian sira: lia-inglés, lia-tetun, lia-portugés ho bahasa.
Uma-fatin (pájina primáriu): http://www.easttimor-reconciliation.org/
"Komisaun ida ne’e hanesan mekanismo ida nasional independente hodi ajuda proseso reconsiliasao entre populasao Timor Lorosa’e ho buka lia los kona ba violasao direitos humanos iha Timor Lorosa’e iha tinan 1974 – 1999. Uluk liu, CNRT maka hato hanoin atu hari Komisaun ida ne’e.  Tuir mai equipa ida composto de representantes hosi CNRT, ONG Nasional nen, UNHCR no devisao dereitos humanos UNTAET halao nia knaar oin sa hari komisaun ne’e. Equipa ne’e halao tiha ona proseso konsulta ba destrito hotu hodi rona visao publiko kona ba idea hari komisaun ne’e.  Konselho nasional simu tiha ona regra ida hodi hari komisaun ne’e. Agora regra ne’e sai hanesan lei iha Timor Lorosa’e."

Portuguese:
Novo Site
Fev 5 Comissão de Acolhimento, Verdade e Reconciliação de Timor Leste
Link de 6 fevereiro 2002; Inglêsa, tetum, português e língua de indonésia.
Página de casa: http://www.easttimor-reconciliation.org/
"A Comissão é um mecanismo nacional independente que assistirá a reconciliação entre timorenses e procurará encontrar a verdade relativa à violação de direitos humanos cometidos entre 1974 e 1999. A Comissão foi inicialmente proposta pelo CNRT.  Posteriormente, estabelecida como uma comissão composta por representantes do CNRT, seis timorenses, ONGs, ACNUR e a divisão de Direitos Humanos da UNTAET. Esta Comissão deslocou-se à todos os distritos para auscultar a opinião pública em relação a ideia de criação da mesma.  Depois do Conselho Nacional ter aprovado o regulamento que estabelece a Comissão, este mesmo regulamento transformou-se em Lei em Timor Leste."

Bahasa Indonesia/Malay:
Situs-Web Baru
Feb 5 Komisi Penerimaan, Kebenaran dan Rekonsiliasi di Timor Lorosa'e?
Halaman Uatama: http://www.easttimor-reconciliation.org/
Link ditambahkan tanggal 6 Febuari 2002; Bahasa Inggeris, Bahasa Tetum, Bahasa Portugis dan Bahasa Indonesia/Melayu.
"Komisi ini adalah sebuah mekanisme nasional independen untuk membantu proses rekonsiliasi antara masyarakat Timor Lorosa'e dan untuk mencari kebenaran tentang pelanggaran hak asasi manusia yang terjadi di Timor Lorosa'e antara 1974-1999. Usulan untuk pembentukkan Komisi ini dimulai dari CNRT dan dikembangkan lebih lanjut oleh sebuah panitia persiapan yang melibatkan CNRT, enam LSM nasional, UNHCR dan Divisi HAM UNTAET. Panitia ini telah melakukan sebuah proses konsultasi ke semua distrik untuk mendengar pandangan publik tentang ide pembentukkan Komisi ini. Dewan Nasional telah menyetujui sebuah peraturan untuk membentuk Komisi ini. Kini peraturan tersebut telah menjadi hukum di Timor Lorosa’e."

New Site
Feb 5: The Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation?
Link added Feb 6; Website in these languages: English, Tetum, Portuguese and Bahasa Indonesia.
Homepage: http://www.easttimor-reconciliation.org/
"The Commission is an independent, national mechanism which will assist reconciliation between East Timorese and establish the truth about human rights violations committed between 1974 and 1999. The Commission was initially proposed by CNRT. It was then developed by a committee comprising representatives of CNRT, six East Timorese NGOs, UNHCR, and the UNTAET Human Rights Unit. This committee traveled to all the districts to listen to public opinion on the idea of establishing this Commission. Since then, the National Council has approved the regulation which establishes the Commission. This has now become the law in East Timor."

Jan 22 Commission for Reception, Truth, and Reconciliation sworn in  Biographies updated Jan 24
"On 21 February [January?] 2002, the National Commissioners of the East Timor Commission for Reception, Truth, and Reconciliation were sworn in to office, with speeches by Jose Ramos Horta, Sergio Vieira de Mello and Xanana Gusmão, and messages from Mary Robinson and Rev. Desmond Tutu. The following are the names and brief biographies of the Commissioners, from the program for the swearing-in ceremony."

Portuguese:
Dec 3 OTL: A Reconciliação
Reportagem de Dec 18
"Timor Leste chega à independência e são muitos os novos desafios. Após 24 anos de violência há muitas feridas a curar. A guerra contra a Indonésia envolveu Timorenses dos dois lados. Para que possam voltar a viver e enfrentar juntos o futuro, a reconciliação entre Timorenses é prioritária; mas poderá haver reconciliação sem justiça? Foi criada uma Comissão de Acolhimento, Verdade e Reconciliação. Qual a atitude dos dois lados perante a ideia de reconciliação? Como é que cada lado vê as condições necessárias para a reconciliação: verdade, desculpas e reparações, perdão? A reconciliação não é uma solução de facilidade." Observatório Timor Leste

Dec 3 ETO: Reconciliation  Overview added Dec 15
"As independence draws near, a variety of new and continuing challenges face East Timor. 24 years of violence have left many wounds yet to heal. Timorese fought on both sides in the war with Indonesia. Reconciliation is now of paramount importance if Timorese are to live in peace again and enjoy a stable future together. But can there be reconciliation without justice? A Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation Commission has been set up. What do the two sides think about reconciliation? What do they consider to be the requirements for reconciliation: truth-seeking, public apology and redress, pardon? Reconciliation is not an easy option." East Timor Observatory

Bahasa Indonesia/Malay:
Okt 01 BLH: Sebuah Tinjauan tentang Komisi untuk Penerimaan, Kebenaran, dan Rekonsiliasi
Laporan ditambahkan tanggal 9 Febuari 2002
"Pada tanggal 13 Juli, UNTAET mengeluarkan Regulasi No. 10/2001 membentuk Komisi untuk Penerimaan, Kebenaran, dan Rekonsiliasi (KPKR) di Timor Lorosa’e. Komisi ini mempunyai tiga wilayah kegiatan, yang masing-masing bertujuan memajukan hak asasi manusia di Timor Lorosa’e. Pertama, Komisi menetapkan kebenaran mengenai pelanggaran-pelanggan hak asasi manusia yang terjadi antara 1974 dan 1999, ... Kedua, KPKR akan membantu “memulihkan martabat kemanusiaan para korban,” sebagaian dengan memberi mereka kesempatan untuk menyampaikan kisah-kisah mereka di depan umum. ... Ada keprihatinan bahwa Perserikatan Bangsa-Bangsa, pemerintah-pemerintah donor, atau pemimpin-pemimpin politik Timor Lorosa’e bisa menggunakan keberadaan KPKR sebagai alasan untuk tidak bergerak ke depan memproses hukum mereka yang melakukan Kejahatan Berat, meskipun kejahatan-kejahatan itu berada di luar cakupan Komisi. Sebuah pemerintah baru, yang menghadapi persoalan anggaran serta tuntutan dan desakan (nasional dan internasional) bisa terbujuk untuk menurunkan prioritas proses hukum, khususnya karena terbatasnya sumberdaya dan pengalaman." La'o Hamutuk: Institut Pemantau dan Analisis Rekonstruksi Timor Timur

October 2001 LHB: Commission for Reception, Truth & Reconciliation  Overview added Nov 9
"The Commission has two general areas of activity ... First, it will establish the truth regarding human rights violations that took place between 1974 and 1999, ... the Commission will investigate not only individual cases of rights violations, but also the extent to which the violations were part of a systematic pattern of abuse. ... The CRTR will also examine the role of international actors - such as foreign governments - in its attempt to provide a full picture of why gross human rights abuses occurred. ... Second, the CRTR will assist “in restoring the human dignity of victims,” in part by providing them with the opportunity to tell their stories publicly. It will also help to promote reconciliation amongst East Timorese by “supporting the reception and reintegration of individuals who have caused harm to their communities” by what are deemed as relatively minor acts of violence (such as killing a few livestock or burning one or two houses)." La'o Hamutuk: East Timor Institute for Reconstruction Monitoring and Analysis

Tetum:
Boletim La’o Hamutuk: [PDF formatu]
Vol. 1, No. 1, 21 Juñu 2000
Rekonciliasaun:
http://www.etan.org/lh/PDFs/bulletin01tetum.pdf




Reports, Articles and News:

Feb 8 CCET: Freedom without justice in East Timor?  Statement added Feb 14
"An international support network of Christian groups and churches at the Twelfth Christian Consultation on East Timor, held in Antwerp from 7-9 December, joined its voice to a mounting international campaign and called for Indonesia to set a deadline of July 2002, after which an international tribunal should be set up to deliver justice. ... [CCET] made the following recommendations to UN bodies: ... 4) We welcome the establishment of the Reception, Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and trust that its work will complement and reinforce the work of the judiciary and the serious crimes unit, rather than place additional burdens upon it." Catherine Scott for Christian Consultation on East Timor (CCET)

Feb 4 Truth Commission goes online  Release added Feb 9
"The first meeting of the National Commissioners of the Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation took place today. The meeting follows the swearing-in of the Commissioners on 21 January, and was chaired by the Deputy Transitional Administrator, Dennis McNamara. At the meeting, Aniceto Guterres Lopes was elected to serve as Chair of the Commission and Father Jovito Araujo was elected as Vice-Chair. ... Following the meeting, the new Commission Chair Aniceto Guterres launched the Commission’s web site http://www.easttimor-reconciliation.org, which contains comprehensive information on the background and functions of the Commission. It includes up-to-date news reports, profiles of the National Commissioners, and articles relating to the views of prominent East Timorese on reconciliation and justice issues."

Jan 31 JSMP: Constituent Assembly adopts Serious Crimes articles  Comment added Feb 1
"The Constituent Assembly yesterday adopted three new articles to the East Timorese constitution who all relates to the process of bringing perpetrators of previous serious crimes in East Timor to justice. The articles, however, surprisingly limits the process quite significantly compared to the system already established by UNTAET. ... JSMP fear that the limitations of the adopted articles derives mainly from confusion over legal terminology and lack of knowledge of the system currently in place for trying Serious Crimes in East Timor. The end result may be that some of the most severe crimes will not be tried, or tried in a court system already overburdened with cases and where the lack of resources may seriously endanger the defendant’s right to a fair trial. In another surprising decision, the assembly adopted a regulation establishing the right of the East Timorese Parliament to revise the mandate of the Reception, Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The suggestion was raised by Chief Minister Mari Alkatiri, and will limit the independence of the commission drastically." Judicial System Monitoring Programme (JSMP)

Portuguese:
Jan 25 OTL: A Indonésia arrasta o julgamento dos crimes cometidos em Timor Leste
Reportagem de 14 fevereiro 2002
"Quanto tempo a comunidade internacional vai conceder ao tribunal para apresentar resultados? Já passaram mais de dois anos sobre os factos. A total ausência de balizas favorece a estratégia de arrastamento. ... O julgamento não é vingança: “é indispensável para abrir caminho a uma verdadeira reconciliação em Timor Leste” afirmou a comissão de inquérito das NU, mas também para “encorajar as reformas democráticas na Indonésia e ajudar a evitar que os oficiais das FA responsáveis pela destruição de Timor Leste, a maior parte dos quais continuam a ter prestígio e poder, continuem a cometer atrocidades contra os cidadãos indonésios” (carta de 30 congressistas americanos a Colin Powell, 30-1-01)." Observatório Timor Leste

Jan 25 ETO: Indonesia delays East Timor atrocities trials  Report added Feb 14
"How much time is the international community going to give the [Indonesia’s ad hoc] tribunal to come up with results? Over two years have already elapsed since the atrocities occurred. A total absence of time limits serves to encourage further delay tactics. ... The trial is not an exercise in vengeance, but rather essential: “to open the way forward to genuine reconciliation in East Timor” (UN Commission of Inquiry), and “to encourage democratic reforms in Indonesia and help prevent the armed forces officers responsible for the devastation in East Timor, most of whom are still in positions of prestige and authority, from continuing to commit atrocities against other Indonesian citizens” (letter from 30 members of the US Congress to Colin Powell, 30-1-01)." East Timor Observatory

Jan 25 JP: End game in East Timor  Editorial added Jan 26
"The heaviest cost that the East Timor debacle is exacting on Indonesia, though, is on its international reputation and image. This incident hurt the entire nation, and not just the military. ... It is no wonder that more and more people around the world see Indonesia as a pariah state. If this image continues, more and more investors and tourists will shun Indonesia. ... Clearly, it is in the best interest of this nation to accelerate the entire legal process. These delays should come to an end, for our own good. We need to put the East Timor nightmare behind us, once and for all, and quickly, and restore our reputation and credibility among the international community. Most of all, we need to get on with our lives." Jakarta Post Editorial

Jepang:
Bahasa Indonesia/Malay:
Jan 22 Shige: Jepang dan TL: Luka Kekerasan Sulit Dilupakan
Artikel ditambahkan tanggal 22 Januari 2002
"Seandainya pemerintah Jepang sungguh mau membangun hubungan bilateral yang baik dengan Timor Lorosae, langkah awal adalah pengakuan kesalahan atas perbuatan dan kebijakannya pada masa lalu yang kejam, baik pada masa Perang Dunia II maupun masa pendudukan militer Indonesia di mana pemerintah Jepang selalu mendukungnya, dan meminta maaf kepada rakyat Timor Lorosae." Takahashi Shigehito, Perwakilan East Timor Desk, Konferensi Uskup Katolik Jepang

Jan 21 ABC: East Timor: Truth Commissioner says process will liberate people  Interview added Jan 22
"This is a most deep division between the pro-autonomy and pro-independence groups. And you see, among the pro-independence and pro-autonomy people, there are also groups that cannot accept one another. And all the groups are still fighting for their own interests. That’s why I think the Commission is a very, very, very good opportunity. It’s a place for East Timorese people meet and to accept that they did (things), they are the perpetrators, they are the victims. It is the process of liberation.” Fr. Jovito Araujo, Catholic priest & National Commissioner of Commission for Reception, Truth, and Reconciliation

Japan:
Jan 10 Shige: Japan & ET: Wounds of Violence are Hard to Forget  Article added Jan 22
"If the Government of Japan really wanted to build a good bilateral relationship with Timor Lorosae, the first step it should take is to acknowledge the mistakes of its brutal policies and actions toward the people in the past, both during WWII, and during the Indonesian military occupation - which Japan’s government consistently supported it - and ask the pardon of the people of Timor Lorosae." Takahashi Shigehito, Resident Representative of East Timor Desk, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan

Bahasa Indonesia/Malay:
Des 14 JSMP: Keadilan Dalam Praktek: HAK asasi manusia dalam administrasi pengadilan
Laporan ditambahkan tanggal Desember 17
"Laporan ini mengkaji efektivitas administrasi Panel Khusus untuk Kejahatan Serius dari Pengadilan Distrik Dili yang dibentuk oleh Pemerintah Transisi PBB di Timor Lorosa’e (UNTAET). Panel Khusus ini diberi mandat untuk menangani Kejahatan-kejahatan Serius yang dilakukan selama pendudukan Indonesia, termasuk kampanye tindak kekerasan di tahun 1999. Kemampuan Panel ini untuk menegakkan keadilan secara adil dan independen sangat penting bagi proses rekonsiliasi yang tengah digalakkan." Program Pemantauan Sistim Peradilan (JSMP)

Portuguese:
Dec 14 JSMP: Justiça na práctica: direitos humonos na administração do tribunal
Reportagem de Dec 17
"Este relatório examina a efectividade da administração do Painel Especial para Crimes Sérios do Tribunal do Distrito de Díli que tem sido criado pela Administração Transitória das Nações Unidas em Timor Leste (UNTAET). Essses Paineis especiais são mandatados para tratar dos crimes sérios cometidos durante a ocupação Indonésia, incluido a campanha de violência em 1999. As suas abilidades de ministrar justiça num clima justo e independente é vital para sustentar o decorrente processo de reconciliação." Programa de Monitorização do Sistema Judicial (PMSJ)

Major Report
Dec 14 JSMP: Justice in Practice - Human Rights in Court Administration
Executive summary added Dec 17
"This report examines the effectiveness of the administration of the Special Panels for Serious Crimes of the Dili District Court that have been created by the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET). These Special Panels are mandated to deal with Serious Crimes committed during the Indonesian occupation, including the campaign of violence in 1999. Their ability to dispense justice in a fair and independent manner is vital for the ongoing reconciliation process." Judicial System Monitoring Programme (JSMP)

Japan:
Dec 8 ETNGOs: Commemoration Day of the Commencement of the Pacific War  Letter added Jan 24
"History is very important in order to build a better future. For that reason, mistakes of the past have to be straighten out before steps can be made forward. If not, human history has already proven similar mistakes will be repeated. We are aware that Japan is the largest donor nation for the East Timor Trust Fund and has given major attention to the reconstruction of East Timor. And we too would like to express our gratitude for this assistance. However, this assistance may not simply cover up the wounds that have been inflicted by the Japanese military on this land of East Timor. If there is no justice, there can be no betterment of life. One needs to remember that the government of Japan is not only responsible for the Second World War, but also for its support of the invasion by the Indonesian military in East Timor over the time period of 24 years. ... We demand an official apology and compensation from the government of Japan to the people of East Timor so that our people may feel consoled." Representatives of 20 East Timorese Non-Government Organisations (NGOs)

Oct 31 Colombia: The Situation in East Timor  Statement to Security Council added Nov 13
"Another point that Mr. Vieira de Mello made relates to the need for proper justice for crimes committed, particularly the most serious offences. We have all recently heard many calls for ad hoc courts or mechanisms to ensure that perpetrators of such crimes are held responsible. This campaign and this activism confirm how important it is to do away with impunity. However, in our opinion, we must focus our efforts on the functioning and strengthening of existing institutions and those that are to be created. In our view, justice and reconciliation should be fully compatible. Without proper justice being done, we cannot set out on the road to true coexistence. The Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation commissions is very useful." Ambassador Alfonso Valdivieso, Permanent Representative of Colombia

Oct 30 IOM: East Timor - Returns on the Increase  News added Oct 31
"In October, IOM has assisted 3,233 East Timorese refugees to return home, the highest number of returns in a single month since March 2000 when 9,485 East Timorese were assisted to return home. This significant increase can be attributed to the ongoing reconciliation process that has boosted the confidence of refugees as to the situation in East Timor, especially since the successful 30 August elections." Jean Philippe Chauzy, International Organisation for Migration (IOM) Spokesperson

Oct 10 ABC: Gusmao: Priorities for the New Nation  Interview added Oct 13
"I think the important question is how can we achieve peace? ... Of course we will not deny justice, the need of justice that if we look at justice in very formal way in terms of trial, punishment, prison, maybe we don’t solve the situation, the situation of the feeling of the people and that’s why to reconcile two sides it needs one who can reconsider, can recognise that he did mistakes and from the other side the willingness to forgive - that is reconciliation." East Timor’s poet revolutionary and presidential nominee Xanana Gusmao

Sep 6 CONG: Anniversary of Suai massacre & Atambua murders  Statements added Sep 7
"An international tribunal on war crimes with a full mandate to investigate crimes both before and after the independence referendum is the only true path to justice and reconciliation in East Timor. I am proud to be the House sponsor of Senator Harkin’s resolution calling for an international tribunal on war crimes in East Timor. House Concurrent Resolution 60 has 58 cosponsors and has been referred to the Committee on International Relations." Rep. Lane Evans

Sep 4 WI: On the road to democracy, where the streets have no name  Interview added Sep 13
"What we want is an independent tribunal that can ensure justice. ... And although as Xanana says there will be an amnesty, that will be the next step. The step after the enforcement of justice. It is impossible, even ridiculous, to give amnesty when we haven’t determined their guilt. That would be wrong. Amnesty will be the prerogative of the future president of Timor. But before that, it has to be determined first whether these person are guilty or not. If found guilty, then they should go to jail for several years. And then the president can decide on amnesty." Partido Democratico (PD) leader, Fernando de Araujo

Aug 30 Time Asia: Gusmao: What Happens Next?  Interview added Aug 30
"TIME: What is your position on amnesty for the violence of 1999? Gusmao: Amnesty can be considered, but only after justice, after trials. Not before. TIME: Would that mean not putting people in jail? Gusmao: It is not my decision to say. As a principle, I only can conceive amnesty after justice. But who can decide? It will be the assembly, the government. Not me."

Aug 28 SMH: To forge a future, Timor needs justice for the past  Article from ETimor added Aug 30
"Prosecuting the crimes of 1999 is essential for East Timor, but also for Indonesia. Democracy there is fragile and the military continues to intrude on both government and civil society. Much remains to be done. We call on the international community for the following: ... * Support the recently established Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation in East Timor to enable people to overcome the legacy of the past and move forward on the path to independence. ... The path to independence follows the road of justice and reconciliation." Bishop Carlos Belo

Aug 13 SMH/J.Dunn: Crimes Against Humanity Demand a Proper Airing  Opinion added Aug 13
"An international tribunal would offer the best path to justice plus the prospect of an enduring reconciliation between Indonesia and the new East Timorese state, which is a virtual precondition of the disengagement of UN peacekeepers. ... East Timorese leader Xanana Gusmao has been a strong advocate of reconciliation but his efforts so far have been one-sided, in the sense that the dialogue involves only the Timorese themselves. To exclude the TNI commanders who set up the militia and commanded the deportation and the destruction is to ignore the root causes of the upheaval." James Dunn, investigator of crimes against humanity in East Timor

Aug 9 SMH: Widows who share a legacy of murder  Article added Aug 10
“We want the militia brought to justice, ... We want the militia tried and punished. Reconciliation means justice and a trial. ... A 10-year old boy was killed right in front of me. His name was Francisco Barreto, ... My husband was dragged into another room. He was stabbed and managed to walk as far as the Junior High School and collapsed there and died from his wounds,” Filomena Fereira da Silva, widow of pro-independence leader murdered during the Maliana police station massacre

Jul 27 AI: EAST TIMOR Justice past, present and future  Report added Aug 13
"The Serious Crimes Unit - which is responsible for investigating and prosecuting these crimes - has suffered from a combination of inadequate resources, a shortage of experienced staff, poor management and a lack of political support. The slow pace and questionable quality of its work has resulted in a loss of confidence among the East Timorese in UNTAET’s ability or will to bring perpetrators to justice with inevitable negative consequences for the process of reconciliation in East Timor." Amnesty International

Jul 26 AI: East Timor: Justice at risk  Release added Aug 1
“Efforts towards reconciliation in East Timor are also being badly undermined by the slow progress and questionable quality of investigations into crimes against humanity and other serious crimes committed by Indonesian security forces and pro-Indonesian militia during 1999. UNTAET’s investigations have suffered from a combination of inadequate resources, a shortage of experienced staff, poor management and a lack of political support.“ Amnesty International

Jul 9 STL: Bishop Belo: Timorese people must be agents of peace  News from ETimor added July 11
“For the past 24 years, there have been tears and suffering and, now, we no longer want it, ... We have experienced a long war experiencing extreme suffering. Now when it is over, we have to promise ourselves never to fight again or use violence,” Dili Bishop Carlos Ximenes Belo

Portuguese:
Jun 18 OTL: Transição e processo eleitoral  Report added June 23
"A UNTAET fez da reconciliação um dos temas principais da campanha eleitoral, mas, enquanto todos reconhecem que não haverá reconciliação duradoura sem justiça, ou no mínimo sem o reconhecimento dos crimes e um pedido de perdão, as Nações Unidas não consagraram aos inquéritos judiciais os meios necessários e recuam perante a convocação de um tribunal internacional. Querem a reconciliação ou o esquecimento? Querem estabelecer uma democracia duradoura ou adormecer os Timorenses até que as Nações Unidas possam anunciar o sucesso da sua missão?" Observatório Timor Leste

Jun 18 ETO: Transition and the electoral process  Report added June 23
"UNTAET made reconciliation one of the electoral campaign’s key issues but, while everyone realises there can be no lasting reconciliation without justice, or at least without admission of the crimes and a plea for forgiveness, the UN has not provided the judicial enquiries with the resources they need, and backs away from calls for an international tribunal. Does it want reconciliation, or for what has happened to be forgotten? Does it want to establish a lasting democracy, or to numb the Timorese until the UN can pronounce that its mission has been successful?" East Timor Observatory

June 22 SMH: And justice for all: Dili backs international war crimes tribunal  Good News added June 23
"East Timor’s de facto government, the National Council, has backed the formation of an international war crimes tribunal to prosecute leaders of anti-independence militias and their Indonesian army supporters. The council voted overwhelmingly in support of the tribunal and also endorsed legislation to establish a South African-style Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The moves were initiated by council member, Mr Aniceto Guterres, East Timor’s best known lawyer, who also heads the country’s Yayasan-HAK human rights foundation" Mark Dodd, Herald Correspondent in Dili

Jun 18 CAA-OA: A step at a time in East Timor  Interview added June 21
"There’s a lot of concern about the effectiveness of the Indonesian government taking control of ensuring justice. Justice is so important to have reconciliation. To a certain extent, they go hand in hand. As long as people feel that the perpetrators of crimes are getting away with it, reconciliation is very, very difficult because they don’t feel that anyone has paid for what happened to them." Keryn Clark, Country Programme Manager, Oxfam Australia (Community Aid Abroad)

Jun 15 ET NGO Forum: Political Transition  Comment added June 18
"During the past 25 years there was a loss of trust due to the oppression of colonisation,  we need to regain the peoples’ trust. We need more resources in the justice system, to build a strong and effective system.  There will be resources for the Truth Reception and Reconciliation Commission, but we must also address with some seriousness the crimes against humanity and war crimes, as Jose Ramos Horta said. The Truth, Reception and Reconciliation Commission is not a substitute for Justice for serious crimes." Forum Nacional ONG Timor Lorosa'e / The East Timor National NGO Forum

Jun 15 ET NGO Forum: Donors’ Meeting Discusses Key Issues  Final release added June 18
"The NGO community is still concerned about the lack of clarity about future justice for East Timor, and urges continued international attention on how this will be achieved. It is essential for Reconciliation. We would like to see an International Tribunal as one of the options to be explored.” Aderito Soares, ET NGO spokesman on Legal and Constitutional issues

Jun 13 ETNGO Forum: The voice of Civil Society calls the Donors  Statement added June 14
"There can be no reconciliation without justice. Therefore, the creation in East Timor of a functioning court administration needs to be a priority for the international donor community. NGOs recommend that funding for adequate and appropriate capacity building within this sector be prioritised as a matter of urgency." Forum Nacional ONG Timor Lorosa'e / The East Timor National NGO Forum

Jun 6 Soares: Lighting The Fires For Peace In East Timor  Article added July 11
"We all must be Peacemakers, red or black, yellow or white, firaku or kaladi, lorosa’e or loro’monu. We - all people - are seeds of hope for gentler times. Our age doesn't matter. It doesn't matter what our life is like or who our family is or where we live. We are all important. Every thought we think, every word we speak, everything we do, circles out to all beings through all places in all times." Roberto Cabral Soares

May 9 GLW: UN lets Indonesian military off the hook  Article added May 9
"In the name of reconciliation, the UNTAET chief of staff spends much of his time courting militia leaders such as the de Carvalho brothers whose militias razed Ainaro town to the ground. Meanwhile, the daily conditions of the East Timorese in East Timor itself lie neglected by the UN.  UNTAET is attempting to push through the National Council a draft regulation for the creation of a “Truth, Reception and Reconciliation Commission”. The commission would write a report charting human rights abuses between 1974 and 1999, based on testimonies. Its other role would be to provide an opportunity to those who did not commit serious crimes to confess and be given some form of community work. It is unlikely that the role of the Indonesian military will be examined and its members made accountable through this process." Vanya Tanaja

28 April – 5 May 2001 CSW: Joint Mission to East Timor  Report added June 30
"Recommendations: That the reconciliation process be integrated with a system of justice, so that there can be no abdication of responsibility by the perpetrators of serious crimes, while also facilitating forgiveness and reconciliation;" Dr Martin Panter & Benedict Rogers, Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW)

Apr 2001 Estafeta: Will East Timor See Justice?  Article added May 9
"Reconciliation without justice: UNTAET is rapidly moving to implement a “Truth, Reconciliation and Reception Commission” (TRRC) that is of limited utility. ... The TRRC will have two principal tasks. The first is to take testimony from victims of crimes committed between 1974 and 1999, and to prepare a report on these crimes. Although the report will probably not explore the chain of command (the Commission is not likely to obtain military documents or testimony from Indonesian sources), it will document the scale and horror of Indonesia’s occupation, including but not limited to the post-ballot destruction.  The more controversial Reconciliation component is limited to people not accused of serious crimes (rape, murder, systematic multiple arson) who choose to live in East Timor." Charles Scheiner, National Coordinator, East Timor Action Network/US

Major Report
Apr 20 SMH: James Dunn 'Crimes Against Humanity in East Timor, Jan-Oct 99'  Executive summary and recommendations added Apr 20
"The wave of violence led to very serious crimes against humanity. They include: killings, including mass murder, torture, abduction, sexual assault and assault against children, as well as mass deportation, and forced dislocation. The crimes against humanity also include the massive destruction of shelter, and of services essential to the upholding of the basic rights of the East Timorese to healthcare and education. In addition there was a massive theft of the property of the people of East Timor. ...
As the result of these crimes East Timor was left without an infrastructure, with its towns and villages in ruins. Its development was in effect set back more than a generation. ...
Efforts should be stepped up to establish the guilt of those ultimately responsible, or with shared responsibility, for the crimes committed in 1999, and to commence action to have them brought to justice. ...
The question of reparations, or some form of compensation, in relation to the massive destruction of shelter and buildings functioning for the well-being of the people, as well as the extensive and organised theft of property, should be placed prominently on the agenda, in relation to negotiations with the Government of Indonesia. ...
Action in relation to these matters is important both to the fulfillment of UNTAET’s mandate in East Timor, and to the development of an appropriately harmonious relationship between the new nation and Indonesia."
James Dunn, Crimes investigator for United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET), 14 February 2001

Feb 28 LUSA: Reconciliation Commission to Cover 1974-1999 Period  News

Jan 23 AGE: Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation  News
"The commission was originally proposed by East Timor and is now being developed with the support of the UN, which is working alongside East Timorese groups, the Catholic church and the umbrella independence body, the National Council of Timorese Resistance." Mark Dodd

Dec 18 2000 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

Nov 11 2000 & Oct 1990 RN: Xanana Gusmao interviews
"what I feel is that if we improve the social and economic situation in East Timor, our people will forgive. This is my own, my personal point of view" Xanana Gusmao - From guerilla fighter to leader of his country.

Aug 30 2000 IHT: A Year Later, East Timor's People Are Still Waiting for Justice  Article added June 30
""The United Nations should immediately set up a human rights tribunal for East Timor. ... The United States, Britain and Australia have a special responsibility to ensure that this happens because for more than two decades they backed Indonesia's occupation of East Timor. Their active support for an international tribunal will help them atone for their complicity. It will also help to heal the wounds of those who were most victimized and to build an independent East Timor which respects the principles of democracy and human rights." Aderito de Jesus Soares, founder, East Timor Jurists Association

Tetum:
Jun 21 2000 Y-HAK: Lopes: Rekonciliasaun Housi Lei Nia Roman  Article
"Principio katak rekonciliasaun tenke bazeia iha esforsu atu fo justisa ba sociedade, liu-liu ba mutun na’in sira (victima). ... Bazeia ba lia-los ne’e mak ita bele hateten katak procesu lei nian la’o. Procesu lei nian ne’e bele la’o iha tribunal (tribunal formal) no mos bele la’o tuir dalan ne’ebe la-os tribunal, hanesan mekanismo fukun (mekanisme adat). Substancia rua ne’e, justisa ho lia-los, bele hala’o hanesan no dala ida de’it, ho hanoin katak sira na’in rua tulun malu. Procesu lei nian bele mos hala’o uluk atu buka lia-los, no dala ruma ita hetan tiha ona lia-los, tuir mai ita lori problema ne’ebe iha ba tribunal." Aniceto Guterres Lopes, Direktor, Yayasan HAK

Jun 21 2000 Y-HAK: Lopes: Reconciliation from a Legal Perspective  Article
"It is a basic principle that we must base reconciliation on the effort to realize justice for the entire society, especially for the victims.  ... Given the spiritual injury experienced by society, the healing process must be gradual. This reconciliation is inevitably tied to the nature of the legal process. Only if there is justice can true reconciliation, or social healing, occur." Aniceto Guterres Lopes, Director, Yayasan HAK


To add items on the ongoing reconciliation process send to BACK DOOR's email: wildwood@pcug.org.au
Reports & position statements are especially welcomed.

Receive FREE weekly email Web-updates: email wildwood@pcug.org.au and include the words "Subscribe BACK DOOR" in the message header. more info

BACK DOOR Newsletter on East Timor     home.........themes ....... search
Website: http://www.pcug.org.au/~wildwood Email: wildwood@pcug.org.au