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BACK DOOR Newsletter on East Timor


A collection of recent media releases, reports, articles and news on the August 30th 2001 East Timor elections for a Constituent Assembly. Following Fretilin’s convincing win, the Constituent Assembly was officially sworn in on September 15th 2001. 

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Up-Dated: Nov 2 2001

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see also
* women's issues - women and the upcoming election
* constitutional process / konsulta iha konstituisaun
* peoples' participation / partisipasaun politika / participação dos dovos
* FRETILIN - Revolutionary Front for an Independent East Timor

Oct 30 UNSC: ET women: ‘Arria formula’ meeting  Speech added Nov 2
"In the last 25 years 96.6% of East Timorese experienced trauma. With the assistance of UNTAET’s Gender Unit and the leadership of Mr. de Mello, women obtained 26% of the seats in the recently elected Constituent Assembly. This remarkable achievement occurred despite the mixed messages from UN departments and ultimate rejection of the proposal that would have required 30% of each party’s political candidates to be women. The will of the East Timorese must be celebrated by continued efforts at expanding women’s roles within a patriarchal society. ... They [rural women] do not participate in decision-making at all levels of government and educational programs. A problem with the election process was voiced by several rural women who stated that: “they had been told who to vote for by their village chiefs.” This indicates a need for election observation efforts to be gender sensitive to women as voters and candidates." Natércia Godinho-Adams, on behalf of East Timorese women’s organizations

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

Sep 20 A Popular Challenge to UNTAET’s Achievements  Statement added Sep 20
"UNTAET has recently published in the September issue of its broadsheet Timor Tais 20 of the UN’s major achievements in East Timor. Many of these achievements are either misleading or things that UNTAET has been forced to do under pressure from Timorese people, civil society and leaders and international critics. ... 7. Civil Registration: The process of civil registration made many mistakes that have been widely noted by international observers of  this year’s elections and by the Independent Electoral Commission. These mistakes made it difficult to establish a reliable voter list, but the hard  work of the IEC helped correct this. Had it not been for the IEC, UNTAET would have left a deeply flawed list of the country’s population. Although, drawing up civil and voters’ lists reflected again the big rush approach of UNTAET."

Sep 13 IFET: Constituent Assembly winners names and parties  List added Sep 13
"The following is the officially certified list of East Timorese who were elected to the Constituent Assembly on the August 30 ballot. Some of these people will probably be selected to serve in the cabinet [of the second transitional government], in which case they [will probably] resign from the Assembly. The next-ranking person on the slate of the party they were elected under will fill the vacancy." Charlie Scheiner, U.N. Representative International Federation for East Timor (IFET)

Sep 10 UNDP: FRETILIN's East Timor electoral victory confirmed  News added Sep 11
"East Timor’s Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has endorsed the results of the 30 August elections, today confirming that the former resistance group, FRETILIN has won a 57 percent majority in the Constituent Assembly. The number of seats falls short of the two-thirds majority needed to draft East Timor’s first Constitution without consultation with other parties, ... " UNDP

Sep 10 UNDP: 24 Women in 88-Seat Constituent Assembly  News added Sep 11
"Results of last week’s elections in East Timor indicate that the territory’s new 88-seat Constituent Assembly will have a total of 24 women members. The full breakdown on female representatives gives the Fretilin party 17, the PSD three, the ASDT one and the PST and PNT one apiece. The party with the lowest female representation is the second- placed PD, which elected no women candidates." UNDP

UNTAET: Election Commission Presents Certified Results To SRSG  News added Sep 11
"They sent a signal to their community leaders, and indeed to the whole world, that for them, a successful electoral process was more important than any particular outcome, ... it is an attitude which typically distinguishes mature democracies from those still in a process of development.” Dr. Bong-Scuk Sohn, Chair of the Independent Electoral Commission
"While the winners at the ballot, Fretilin, deserve our congratulations, all those who took part in the elections likewise deserve credit and our utmost respect, ... In East Timor today, democracy looks to be in a very healthy state indeed.” SRSG Sergio Vieira de Mello

Bahasa Indonesia:
Sep 10 Teks Pakta Persatuan Nasional (ditanda tangani 8 July 2001)  Terjemahan ditambahkan tanggal 10 Sep
"Pakta Persatuan Nasional: Yakin bahwa ada keperluan untuk menciptakan dan memelihara suasana yang damai dan stabil sebagai dasar pertama untuk pembangunan berkelanjutan Timor Lorosa'e; Mengingat primsip2 mentahbiskan dalam Magna Carta yang disetujui dalam Konvensi Nasional Timor Timur dalam Pengasingan yang pertama diadakan di Peniche, Portugal, tertanggal 25 April 1998; Menyadari kebutuhan menjaminkan suasana penghormatan dan kepercayaan satu sama lain; ... " APODETI Pro-Refrendum; ASDT Associação Sosial Demokrata Timorense; FRETILIN Frente Revolucianário de Timor Leste Independente; KOTA Klibur Oan Timor Aswa’in; PD Partido Demokrático; PDC Partido Demokrata Cristão; PDM Partido Democrático Maubere; PL Partai Liberal; PPT Partido de Povo de Timor; PSD Partido Social Democrata Timor Lorosa’e; PST Partido Socialista de Timor; PTT Partido Trabalhista Timorense; UDC/PDC União Democratica Cristão; UDT União Democrática Timorense. [Pakta ini ditandatagani, kapada taggal 8 July 2001 oleh semua partai polik Timor Lorosa'e, kecuali PARENTIL dan PNT.]

Sep 8 CM: Australian Labor MP on Tampa refugees and ETimor  Article added Sep 10
"Horta had been telephoned early on the morning of Thursday, August 30 (the actual day of the vote) ... to see if East Timor could assist with taking asylum seekers from the Tampa. ... the monstrous insensitivity of the Australian Government disrupting the East Timorese political leadership on the very morning of the country’s first democratic elections in its history beggars belief." Labor MP Kevin Rudd, all-party [Australian] delegation to ETimor's elections

Sep 6 RDP: Fretilin leader makes victory speech  Speech added Sep 8
"Fretilin is proud to have carried out and ensured an irreproachable election campaign. ... Fretilin reiterates solemnly its intention to constitute a government of inclusion, which will act as a catalyst for knowledge and the available synergies, to build and consolidate a state apparatus which is effective and without room for corruption, nepotism or the traffic of influence. A state where moral standards and ethics prevail in the defence of the public good and in the establishment and consolidation of a democratic state of law. Fretilin commits itself, before the Maubere people, to guarantee the construction of a democratic state of law in East Timor, and it will do its utmost so that nothing and no one is able to jeopardize this objective." Lu Olo, Fretilin’s president

Sep 6 RDP: Timorese leaders reiterate commitment to government of inclusion  Interview added Sep 8
"We have said several times that instead of thinking of a coalition between parties, we should think of a coalition of talents. This country needs skills to be reborn with vigour and this is what we hope to do." Mari Alkatiri, Fretilin leader & future first prime minister of the second transitional government of East Timor
"I think that Fretilin, above all, has shown that it reality wants a government of inclusion which will have people from parties which did not even obtain 1 per cent in the elections, one deputy - as long as the person has talent - this is a great historic opportunity, a golden opportunity for Fretilin to show that it is a party of statesmen. ... I would like to see the entire process of reconciliation, of inclusion to involve UDT, a historic party which was not very successful in these elections." Jose Ramos Horta, current foreign minister

Sep 6 East Timor Election Results (percentage summaries) Results added Sep 8

Sep 6 UNTAET: Final Election Results Announced Today In East Timor  Briefing added Sep 7
"Fretilin is the winning party, with 43 seats in the national election, and 12 of the 13 district seats. The 88-member assembly will consist of one representative from each of East Timor’s 13 districts, with the rest of the seats divided on a proportional representation basis. The seat allocation on national seats is as follows:
Frente Revolucionária do Timor-Leste Independente (Fretilin): 57.3 % of the vote, 43 seats; Partido Democrático (PD): 8.7 %, 7 seats; Partido Social Democrata (PSD): 8.1%, 6 seats; Associação Social-Democrata Timorense (ASDT): 7.8 %, 6 seats; União Democrática Timorense (UDT): 2.3 %, 2 seats; Partido Nasionalista Timorense (PNT): 2.2 %, 2 seats; Klibur Oan Timor Asuwain (KOTA): 2.1 %, 2 seats; Partido do Povo de Timor (PPT): 2 %, 2 seats; Partido Democrata Cristão (PDC): 1.9 %, 2 seats; Partido Socialista de Timor (PST): 1.7 %, 1 seat; Partai Liberal (PL): 1.1 %, 1 seat; Partido Democrata-Cristão de Timor (UDC/PDC): 0.6 %, 1 seat." UNTAET

Sep 6 ETAN: Grassroots & Congressional Action Mark Anniversary of Timor Massacres  Release added Sep 6
““East Timor took an historic step with last week’s democratic, multiparty election. Yet, the U.S. and the wider international community have failed to fully address critical issues,” said John M. Miller, spokesperson for ETAN. “The victims of past crimes require justice and all refugees in West Timor who wish to return must be able to do so.” Approximately one-tenth of those eligible to vote last week in East Timor’s constituent assembly election could not do so. They were among the estimated 80,000 East Timorese still held in squalid refugee camps in Indonesian West Timor. Humanitarian workers have described widespread malnutrition, epidemics, militia intimidation and violence against women in the camps, which are controlled by militia backed by the Indonesian military.” East Timor Action Network (ETAN)

Sep 4 WI: On the road to democracy, where the streets have no name  Interview added Sep 13
"We’ll take Fretilin as an example. Many people question why PD does not join the Fretilin. But for PD members, the priority is to democratize the process. We do not want this country to be dominated by just one group. ... When we speak of the (type of) people, in Fretilin there is a tendency towards veteranism. The seniors are considered to have more rights or know more. This is a very patenalistic attitude unwanted by the PDs. ... There is also the question of leadership. We believe in the necessity for a new generation. ... 70% of the top leaders of PD are under 40. You can’t say we’re really youths ... we’re called the post-75 generation." Partido Democratico (PD) leader, Fernando de Araujo

Sep 4 UNTAET: Further Results Announced In Constituent Assembly Polls  Results added Sep 5
"The Independent Electoral Commission today announced the final, yet-to-be-certified national representative results from the East Timorese districts of Viqueque, Lautem, Oecussi, Bobonaro and Ermera districts following the 30 August Constituent Assembly elections." UNTAET Daily Briefing 4 September 2001

Sep 4 DemNow!: East Timor Votes  Radio interview added Sep 4
"But East Timor is still far from being a truly independent country. 9,000 UN troops continue to occupy the territory. East Timor will celebrate its independence almost wholly dependent upon foreign aid. International agencies such as the World Bank and IMF are creating East Timor’s infrastructure almost from scratch, while foreigners already dominate the local economy ...
Guests: Jose Ramos Horta; Joaquim Fonseca, Yayasan Hak; John Miller, East Timor Action Network." Democracy NOW!

Sep 3 CIIR: Listen to East Timorese women’s voices, urges CIIR  Release added Sep 6
"CIIR’s delegation in East Timor looked at women’s participation in the 30 August elections, met political parties, non-governmental organisations, UN agencies and voters in Dili and in the districts and concluded:
- Women were represented in party lists but this doesn’t mean that women will automatically be elected. ...
- Most parties have not prioritised the needs of women in their programmes. ...
- There is a severe lack of understanding of the objective of the elections among the rural women. ...
- Violence against women is endemic, amplified by the post-conflict situation. ...
- Women have energetically organised to address these issues through organisations ... " Catholic Institute for International Relations (CIIR)

Sep 3 UNTAET: First Results Announced In Constituent Assembly Polls  Results added Sep 5
"The Independent Electoral Commission today announced the final, yet-to-be-certified results from the 30 August Constituent Assembly elections. District and national results were announced for five districts [Aileu, Ainaro, Covalima, Liquiça, and Manatuto], as well as the district representative for Lautem. All the district representatives provisionally elected thus far are representatives of the Fretilin party." UNTAET Daily Briefing 3 September 2001

Sep 3 YHak: Elections in the Context of Nation-Building  Release added Sep 4
"Much emphasis is being placed on the provisional figure of the 91% voter turnout. However this figure must be compared to the figure of 98.6% voter turnout in the 1999 Popular Consultation. In extremely difficult circumstances the East Timorese people demonstrated their will and understanding of the act of voting and its accompanying mechanisms. In 2001, in peaceful and secure environment, with the presence of heavily funded electoral education campaign, the voter turnout stands lower at 91%. Therefore the figure of 91% should not be read as evidence of a successful election, but evidence of the desire of the East Timorese people to have a voice in their future. ... This election is a step towards democracy, but is a small step in a long process to a successful transition to democracy." Yayasan HAK: Hukum, Hak Asasi & Keadilan (Law, Human Rights & Justice)

Sep 3 IFET Preliminary Election Observations  Report added Sep 4
" ... this election is a small but important part of the larger process of nation-building, leading to a constitution, independence, and self-government. IFET believes that this step has been mounted successfully, but that significant obstacles remain for a truly democratic process. ... We believe that the campaign and voting were largely free and fair, and that the results will accurately reflect the preferences of the people of East Timor within the limited issues and choices placed before them." International Federation for East Timor (IFET)

Sep 3 STL: Bishop Belo invites refugees to return because of peaceful election  News from ETimor added Sep 4
“You have all seen the way the 30 August election was conducted. It was peaceful and calm. Because of that, I appeal to all of you to return home to your country of birth so that you can live peacefully with all of us, ... We will congratulate which party that gets the most votes. Those parties that do not get enough votes must not be disappointed because they will have an opportunity again in four or five years time,” Nobel Peace Laureate Bishop Carlos Ximenes Belo

Sep 3 Voting Behaviour, Outcome & Post-Election Role for the Int'l Community  Analysis added Sep 4
"A return to conflict in the aftermath of the election is a remote possibility. Simply put, however ingenuous this may sound, the uniqueness of East Timorese postconflict election, itself is a guarantee for peace and security. In other words, the risk of going back to bullet from ballot is minimal if not non-existence." Joao Boavida

Sep 1 RDP: UDT to challenge results of first free elections  Interview added Sep 4
"Sergio Vieira de Mello, head of UNTAET, the UN Transitional Administration in East Timor, has replied to the fraud accusations, made by UDT [Timorese Democratic Union] leader Joao Carrascalao, after the [30 August] elections [for the constituent assembly]. Sergio Vieira de Mello said these comments were alarmist and violated the spirit under which the political parties signed a national unity pact. He also said that the results would talk for themselves and that all irregularities pointed out by Joao Carrascalao, or anyone else, would be investigated by the Independent Electoral Committee. ... Speaking in a press conference, the UDT president blamed Fretilin [Revolutionary Front for an Independent East Timor] for crimes against humanity and demanded the UN to carry out a probe on the territory’s history of the period between 1974 and 1975. He added that this was a necessary step to preventing criminals from ruling the country." RDP Antena 1 radio, Lisbon, Portugal

Sep 1. 11 am UN IEC: Statement of Chief Electoral Officer  Statement added Sep 2
"I would like to reiterate that our highest priority is the accuracy of the count, and we will take the time necessary to ensure that the results reflect the will of the voters. That said, we are on schedule at this point and anticipate that we will continue to be." Chief Electoral Officer, Independent Electoral Commission, UN

Aug 31 JSMP: Election observervation report Becora prison  Report added Sep 1
"A number of significant problems were observed, leading to only 47% of the eligible voters being able to cast their votes. As a result, many prisoners voiced their frustration and anger at being effectively disenfranchised through procedural flaws in the electoral process. ... JSMP makes the following recommendations: 1. That prisoners continue to be eligible to vote in future elections in East Timor; 2. That special provision be made for prisoners to vote outside their registered address or polling centre; 3. That future polling procedures be designed with the special circumstances of prisoners, who are detained by the State, in mind." Judicial System Monitoring Programme (JSMP)

Aug 31. 7 pm UN IEC: Statement of Chief Electoral Officer  Statement added Sep 1
"From these figures, we can see that the highest turnout in percentage terms was in Ermera, with 94.3 percent turnout, and the lowest was in Dili with 87.1 percent.  Nevertheless, Dili produced the highest absolute number of voters, with 70,136 ballots issued." Chief Electoral Officer, Independent Electoral Commission, UN

Aug 31. 11am UN IEC: Statement of Chief Electoral Officer  Statement added Sep 1
" ... the Independent Electoral Commission is pleased to report that all ballot boxes have now safely arrived in the district capitals, and the counting process has begun. ... we can say that from the total estimated voter population, we have a turnout of 91 percent. ... We anticipate that we may have complete results from one or two districts by the end of the weekend, with the bulk of the results coming during the first half of next week." Chief Electoral Officer, Independent Electoral Commission, UN

Aug 30 UN IEC: Election Day Statements by Chief Electoral Officer  Statements added Aug 31
"30 August 2001 will be remembered in the history of East Timor as a demonstration of the capacity of the East Timorese people to organize themselves, to participate, and to confront their differences in the context of a multiparty democracy.  It will also be remembered as a peaceful election, and this will help reassure the East Timorese people that they can exercise their democratic rights without fear." Chief Electoral Officer, Independent Electoral Commission, UN

Aug 30 Time Asia: Gusmao: What Happens Next?  Interview added Aug 30
"TIME: Are you worried that the election will proceed badly? Gusmao: I had been very worried about violence. So far, we don’t have any reports of it."

Aug 29 JRS: Refugees await election outcome  Alert added Sep 1
"As East Timor holds its first election on 30 August, an estimated 10 per cent of its population living in refugee camps in West Timor will not be participating in this process. According to JRS West Timor, some 80,000 refugees remain, ... Many refugees are still expected to return to East Timor. JRS East Timor director, Frank Brennan SJ, said the people in the camps are now waiting for a negotiated settlement between their leaders and an elected government in East Timor. “Generally people seem resigned to waiting until given the word from someone higher up whom they trust that it is time to move,” said Fr Brennan." Jesuit Relief Service

Aug 29 AP: Large Number Of Voters Turn Up For East Timor Election  News added Aug 30
"Long lines formed in front of polling stations in the morning twilight more than an hour before they opened at 7 a.m. (2000 GMT Wednesday). The atmosphere was relaxed as people joked with police who were ushering women and children to the front of the line. Election monitors said there were no reports of violence. ... Voters will choose the 88-member assembly that will write the fledgling country’s constitution, and there was little doubt who would win. The Revolutionary Front for an Independent East Timor, which led the country’s independence struggle, had a comfortable lead in polls." AP

Aug 29 FAETTA: Horta's response to PD advert  Release added Aug 30
"Tomorrow’s vote is not to choose the President and the Vice-President of the Republic, but simply and only to elect the Constituent Assembly. ... Under these circumstances I categorically and unequivocally declare that neither Xanana Gusmao nor myself Ramos-Horta are in the running for the August 30 elections. I therefore encourage every Timorese to vote their conscience, in choosing from the parties and candidates that are actually running for election, and vote for those you trust." Cabinet Member for Foreign Affairs Dr Jose Ramos-Horta

Aug 29 FRETILIN Italia: Coordinamento italiano di solidarieta’ con il Popolo Timorese  Letter added Aug 31
"Domani Timor Est fara’ un altro passo decisivo verso la piena sovranita’.  Il mio popolo eleggera’ i membri dell’Assemblea Costituente. La campanga elettorale e’ stata contraddistinta dalla calma e dell’ ormai avvenuto divorzio tra Xanana e il mio partito. Il FRETILIN e’ il grande favorito in virtu’ di 24 di lotta, di una maggior preparazione politica e dell’ ormai scomparsa dell’ avversario storico l’ UDT che non e’ riuscito a sopperire all’ emorragia verso il PSD e il PD. Per questi due neonate formazioni politiche il tempo non ha consentito che si organizzassero a sufficenza per contrastare la nostra capillare diffusione sul territorio." Davide Corona, FRETILIN ITALIA

Aug 29 GLW: Elections mark new step toward independence  Article added Aug 31
"Overall there is very little to distinguish the contesting parties from each other. In many cases their platforms or policies are identical. Most espouse support for a “free-market” economy. The only exception is the Socialist Party of Timor (PST) which has consistently focused on developing a base among workers and the rural poor through establishing peasant cooperatives and campaigning for better wages and conditions for East Timorese employed by the UN and private businesses. The 5000 strong rally the PST organised in Dili on August 25 reflects its growing influence." Jon Land, Indonesia - East Timor Campaign Watch

Aug 28 SMH: To forge a future, Timor needs justice for the past  Article from ETimor added Aug 30
"On Thursday we elect a constituent assembly which will write our constitution. It is a proud moment for a new country. As we move towards independence, we must remain vigilant in pursuing justice for those whose lives were scarred by violence. The inner life of the people of East Timor continues to be clouded by the events of 1999, as well as by doubts about the future." Bishop Carlos Belo

Aug 28 Problems in East Timorese participating in the elections  Statement added Aug 29
" ‘How about my democratic right to choose the leaders to represent me?’ asks a villager who will have to walk 4 - 5 hours to vote in East Timor’s first ever democratic elections. ... This is the foundation of the new country but some will be denied their right to participate. Many East Timorese will have to walk long distances to vote. The young can do it but how about the old, sick, handicapped and who will look after the children and village when people are away voting?"

Aug 27 ABC: Fretilin expects to win more than 60 seats  Interview added Aug 29
"Fitzgerald: You have a reputation as a socialist. Is that a perception?
Alkatiri [Sec-Gen, Fretilin]: “I always refuse to be labelled. What I can assure you is that my main pre-occupation is people. How to help them, how to develop the country to such a level that they can have what they need. I am not against the rich people but I am really against poverty.” " Australian Broadcasting Corporation

Aug 25 Xanana: Desizaun ba Kandidata an Presidente hosi Timor Lorosa’e  Statement added Aug 29
"Loron hirak tan, iha 30 de Agosto,  ita hotu sei tuir eleisoens ba Assembleia Constituinte, nebé sei fila ba ita nia Parlamento. Fou-foun kedas, mosu duvida iha povu nia let kona ba se mak atu sai Presidente, tanba ita nia povu hanoin katak ita sei tui sistema indonésio nian nebé DPR mak foti Presidente."Kay Rala Xanana Gusmão

Aug 25 Xanana: "Aceitarei Ser Candidato Dos Partidos A Presidente"  Statement added Aug 29
"As eleições que vão ter lugar no próximo dia 30 de Agosto serão para a Assembleia Constituinte e que muito provàvelmente virá a tranformar-se no primeiro Parlamento. Havia logo no início, no seio do povo, a dúvida se estas eleições seriam também para o Presidente da República, pois o povo estava já habituado ao sistema das eleições indonésias, onde o parlamento decide sobre quem deve ser o Presidente." Kay Rala Xanana Gusmão

Aug 25 Xanana's statement on decision to run for President  Statement added Aug 29
"The elections which will take place on 30 August are for the Constituent Assembly which will, in all likelihood, transform itself into the first Parliament. From the beginning there existed among our people doubts as to whether these elections would also determine who would become the President of the Republic given that our people are accustomed to the Indonesian electoral system, according to which the parliament decides who will take office as President." Kay Rala Xanana Gusmão

Aug 24 UNIFEM: Participation of women as candidates for the elections  Info update added Aug 25
"We have made an important update to the East Timor page of the UNIFEM East and South East Asia web site ... Almost all of the page content has been changed, with the highlight being an all new section about the participation of women as candidates for the 30th August 2001 election, including an assessment of the support they will need to be elected. " Geoff Corner, UNIFEM

Aug 21 CIIR: Where are East Timor's women leaders?  Article added Aug 23
"As the people of East Timor prepare to elect the country’s first national assembly since independence CIIR is sending an all-women team of observers to focus on women’s participation. ... Three women candidates are standing as independent candidates in the districts, Olandina Caeiro, Teresa Carvalho, and Maria Domingas Fernandes. The election of one or all of them ... ‘ ... would be a step towards dealing with unreasonable discrimination in East Timorese society, which is profoundly conservative and traditional, and in which women occupy a position of subjugation, if we succeed in changing it just a little bit.’ [Caeiro said]" Catherine Scott, Asia Policy Officer, Catholic Institute for International Relations (CIIR)

Aug 20 SMH: Gusmao ready to stand for president  News added Aug 20
"Ending months of speculation on the eve of his country’s first democratic elections, East Timor’s charismatic independence leader Mr Xanana Gusmao has indicated he is prepared to stand for president. A diplomatic source in Dili said he would publicly confirm details of his proposed political role in days. ... “He says he is going to put the condition that if they want him to be president of East Timor that not a single drop of blood shall be spilt, [during the elections]” the source said." Mark Dodd, Herald Correspondent in Dili and agencies

Aug 20 Text of Pact of National Unity (signed July 8th)  Text added Aug 20
"Pact of National Unity: Convinced of the need to create and maintain an atmosphere of peace and stability as primary grounds for the sustainable development of East Timor; Considering the principles consecrated in the Magna Carta approved at the First National Convention of East Timor, which took place in 1998, in Peniche, Portugal; Conscious of the need to assure an atmosphere of mutual respect and trust ... " APODETI Pro-Refrendum AssociaçaoPopularDemocráticadeTimor Pró-Refrendum; ASDT Associação Sosial Demokrata Timorense; FRETILIN Frente Revolucianário de Timor Leste Independente; KOTA Klibur Oan Timor Aswa’in; PD Partido Demokrático; PDC Partido Demokrata Cristão; PDM Partido Democrático Maubere; PL Partai Liberal; PPT Partido de Povo de Timor; PSD Partido Social Democrata Timor Lorosa’e; PST Partido Socialista de Timor; PTT Partido Trabalhista Timorense;
UDC/PDC União Democratica Cristão; UDT União Democrática Timorense. [Signed by all parties except PARENTIL and PNT]

Aug 19 VOA: Xanana Gusmao: Guerrilla-Turned-Statesman  Article added Aug 22
"East Timor is not likely not to hold a presidential election until just before it achieves full independence early next year, and that poses a problem for East Timor’s U.N. caretakers. Mr. Gusmao is so extraordinarily popular that many are under the mistaken belief that the August 30 ballot to election an interim council to write a constitution is really a presidential election, and thousands have declared their intention to vote for Mr. Gusmao." Patricia Nunan

Aug 18 STL: Bishop Belo's Pastoral letter  Letter added Aug 20
"Those amongst you who want to be big must first be your servers; those amongst you who want to be famous must first be your slaves. Why? Because the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to give his life so that Mankind may live (Mark 10: 43-45) ... Once again we are at a crucial moment in our history, a moment that is important in our efforts to develop our nation. This is our first general election. In less than two weeks we will choose, for the first time, our leaders the people's representatives who will be given the heavy responsibility of drafting a Constitution that will encompass all our hopes and aspirations." Bishop Carlos Ximenes Belo

Aug 18 SMH: After 26 years, Timorese about to begin life again  Article added Aug 18
"Whether or not Fretilin will win its expected landslide, it appears there will be a large percentage gap between it and the second-place party. Because 16 parties are competing, the vote of the 409,019 electors will be divided various ways, a problem aggravated by the fact that most parties were only formed after 1999. There is no one opposition party that can match Fretilin.
The serious contenders in the second rank are the Social Democrat Party (PSD in the Portuguese acronym) led by former governor Mario Carrascalao, the Democratic Party (PD), headed by student leader Fernando Araujo, the radical Timorese Socialist Party (PST), led by Avelino Coelho da Silva, and the nationalist Timorese Democratic Union (UDT), led by Joao Carrascalao. The Timorese Social Democratic Party (ASDT), formed by Fretilin founder Francisco Xavier do Amaral last March, may also make its mark, with support from traditional leaders in the central Ainaro region." Jill Jolliffe (in Dili), freelance journalist, author of 'Cover-Up: The Inside Story of the Balibo Five' [to be published Oct 16]

Aug 13 RDP: East Timorese political rivals exchange accusations  Interview added Aug 14
"The old political rivals UDT and Fretilin seem to have awakened to a new existence of political opposition, 26 years after the ideological dispute which took East Timor to civil war. The UDT has accused its political opponent of promoting an anti-democratic intimidation campaign but Fretilin has countered these accusations. In an attempt to play down UDT’s accusations, Mari Alkatiri, the secretary-general of Fretilin [economy minister of the transition government who stood down for campaigning] has said that UDT is the party ignoring the principles of democracy" Antonio Veladas

Aug 11 ABC RN: Jose Ramos Horta: Walk a Mile in my Shoes  Transcript added Aug 13
"Picture an election where the media has no real influence, an election where, if you want to take your message to the people, you have to fly to remote mountaintops, or drive for hours on treacherous roads and risk attacks from violent gangs. An election where if you’re to have any chance of winning, you’ve got to have the blessing of the church. An election where voters are scared to go to the ballot box because the last time they did, they saw their houses go up in flames and blood flow in the streets. ... this week ... we go on a campaign trail like no other, with Jose Ramos Horta in East Timor, as his country literally invents its own institutions." Gerald Tooth

Aug 9 RENETIL'S Election Observer Commission  Statement added Aug 30
"Civic education is a comprehensive program that takes place in the context of the political process by sharing information about democracy, human rights, tolerance, and the obligations of citizens. The entire nation is the author of this process. Who does what with whom, how and to whom, are the important questions to be answered in concrete political behavior. Electoral observation can help people to assess the democratisation process because elections are one way to see if democracy, human rights, freedom, law and order are being respected." RENETIL, Resistencia Nacional Dos Estudantes De Timor Leste

Aug 6 EMMP: Timor Journalists Adopt Code of Conduct for Elections  Statement added Aug 13
"The Timor Lorosa’e Journalists’ Association (TLJA) adopted a code of conduct for its members to follow during the ongoing election campaign in East Timor ... The voluntary code is an effort by TLJA to encourage its members to behave in a fair and responsible manner during the territory’s first free elections. ... The aim of the code is to assist Timorese journalists in maintaining careful balance in their reporting while avoiding taking sides in political debates." Election Media Mediation Panel

Aug 5 Contact info for ET political parties  Info added Aug 10

Jul 25 IFET: Scheiner: No IFET-OP 2001 observer project  Letter added July 26
"A number of people from around the world have asked if the International Federation for East Timor (IFET) is going to organize an observer project for the upcoming August 30 constituent assembly election in East Timor, as we did for the referendum two years ago. Based on advice from East Timorese NGOs, on our capacity, and on our assessment of the current situation, we will not be organizing such a project. ... This is a decision based on priorities and resources, not on principle. ... We reached this decision reluctantly, after discussions with La’o Hamutuk, Yayasan Hak, and other East Timorese NGOs." Charles Scheiner, U.N. Representative, International Federation for East Timor (IFET)

Jul 20 OTL: As eleições para a Assembleia Constituinte e os Partidos Políticos  Report added July 26
"As primeiras eleições livres de Timor Leste devem realizar-se em 30 de Agosto. A sua organização pertence ao Governo transitório das Nações Unidas que tiveram de realizar o recenseamento da população e o recenseamento eleitoral, registo dos partidos políticos e dos candidatos. Mais difícil é assegurar a paz a uma população que tem a recordação viva da destruição que se seguiu os resultados da consulta popular organizada pelas NU em 1999." Observatório Timor Leste

Jul 20 ETO: Constituent Assembly Elections and the Political Parties  Report added July 24
"East Timor’s first free elections are to take place on 30 August. They have been organised by the UN transitional government, which first had to carry out a population census and an electoral registration process, and then conduct a registration of the political parties and other election candidates. However, a more difficult task is that of keeping the peace among a population for whom the devastation that followed the announcement of the results of the UN-sponsored popular consultation in 1999 is still a vivid memory." East Timor Observatory

Jul 20 STL: Fretilin shakes Liquica town  News from ETimor added Jul 21
“But today we are gathered here full of hope. Now we live free in a democracy. We do not have to be afraid of the enemy, because the enemy has left the country. Democracy, now, is not the same as democracy during the time of the Indonesians. Democracy now will bring us to the road of independence,” Luis Lobato.

Jul 18 STL: Don’t believe rumors  Editorial from ETimor added July 20
"But the irresponsible are still around. As evidenced two days ago, they were some politicians who were spreading rumors that there was a group of armed Indonesians heading towards Timor Lorosae. All these rumors are meant to scare people. FDTL Commander Brigadier-General Taur Matan Ruak had to intervene to calm the people. He asked the people not to believe rumors and not to believe those who said an armed group of Indonesian was out to disrupt the 30 August election." Suara Timor Lorosae

Jul 16 STL: National Council Officially Dissolved  News from ETimor added July 17
"The Transitional UN Administrator Sergio Vieira de Mello on Saturday officially dissolved the National Council." Suara Timor Lorosae

Jul 9 STL: National Unity Pact signed  News from ETimor added July 11
"The long-awaited National Unity Pact was at least signed by 14 political parties last night. Only two parties opted to stay out of it ­ the National Party of Timor (PNT) and National Republic Party of Timor Leste (Parentil). ... Political parties that signed the National Unity Pact will be bound by 14 clauses. The most important clause is that all parties must accept unconditionally the results of the UN-supported popular consultation on 30 August 1999, whereby the Timorese overwhelmingly voted to separate from Indonesia. ... Also, all the political parties, in the pact, agreed to refrain from violence ... " Suara Timor Lorosae

Jul 8 Pacto Unidade Nacional Nian  Text added Sep 1
"Pacto Unidade Nacional Nian: Hatene tiha ona katak iha necessidade atu hamoris no kuda dame no hakmatek iha ita nia let hanesan alicerce fundamental ida hatu haburas Timor Lorosae; Hare ba principios lulik sutar makna nian nebe maka hetan provação huso convencão ba dala uluk iha tinan 1998 iha Piniche Portugal; Hatene tiha ona katak iha necicidade atu kuda iha ita nian let respeita malu no fiar malu; ... " APODETI Pro-Refrendum; ASDT Associação Sosial Demokrata Timorense; FRETILIN Frente Revolucianário de Timor Leste Independente; KOTA Klibur Oan Timor Aswa’in; PD Partido Demokrático; PDC Partido Demokrata Cristão; PDM Partido Democrático Maubere; PL Partai Liberal; PPT Partido de Povo de Timor; PSD Partido Social Democrata Timor Lorosa’e; PST Partido Socialista de Timor; PTT Partido Trabalhista Timorense; UDC/PDC União Democratica Cristão; UDT União Democrática Timorense. [Partidu ida-idak tau asinatura sira-nian iha lia-kotun. Maibé PARENTIL no PNT la tau asinatura.]

Jul 8 PD: Manifesto & speech of Partido Democratico  Full text added July 12
" ... the Democratic Party, want to remind and appeal to all of you to contribute your strength, knowledge and experience to the political party that you have chosen. The Democratic Party respects your freedom of choice and its doors are wide open to every citizen of Timor Loro Sae. If you want democracy and the new political alternative you are welcome to join PD!" Fernando "La Sama" de Araujo, President of Democratic Party (PD)

Jul 4 GLW: New party in East Timor faces election challenge  Article added July 12
"In the lead-up to the elections, the PST [Socialist Party of Timor] has launched a new political manual designed to give a basic introduction to the party for new members. The 15-page publication sets out, and answers, “frequently asked questions” about the PST: its structure, its program on social, political and economic issues. The PST has put forward 75 candidates for the Constituent Assembly election, 19 of whom, including its top candidate, are women. In a surprise move, the list does not include its high-profile general secretary, Avelino Coelho da Silva. Coelho said he would be focusing his attention on other areas of the party’s activities." Vanya Tanaja

Jul 3 UN: Timor Sea arrangement approved by East Timor cabinet  Release added July 7
“This is the very first time the United Nations has participated in negotiating a treaty on behalf of a country. It will be up to the new elected Government of East Timor to decide whether it wants the treaty or not. I believe it is a good treaty, I think it is to the advantage of East Timor and so my recommendation would be that East Timor agree its terms,” Peter Galbraith, Cabinet Member for Political Affairs and Timor Sea

Junho 2001 BLH: Lia Badak: Nasional survey konaba votantes sira nian konhecimentu  News from ETimor added Aug 26
"Iha loron 22 fulan Maiu, Asia Foundation (husi Estados Unidos) fo sai resultadu “nasional survey konaba votantes sira nian konhecimentu.” Survey ne’e hala’o iha fin de Marsu husi working group NGO Forum ba Edukasaun Votantes sira nian, envolve mos ho intrevistas ho votantes potensiais iha districtus 13 iha rai Timor. Hatudu Timor eleitoradu sira senti positivu pursentu 75 ema ba hare ne’e hanoin katak rai ne’e la’o iha diresaun los no pursentu 94 hatete katak sira atu vota iha eleisaun be mai ne’e. Maibe resultadu ne’e fo’o preokupasaun bo’ot konaba eleisaun." La’o Hamutuk, Institutu Timor Lorosa’e ba Analiza no Monitor Reconstrusaun

Junho 2001 BLH: Lia Badak: Partisipasaun Politika hosi Feto  News from ETimor added Aug 26
"Iha loron 1 fulan Maiu, UNTAET sira nian “Gender Affairs/Urusan Gender” Unit hamutuk ho Nasoes Unidas nian Fundus ba Feto sira (UNIFEM) komesa halao treinu potensial ba kandidatus feto sira. Treinu ne’e hala’o iha fulan Maiu nian laran to’o prinsipiu fulan Junhu no fokus ba partisipasaun politika, halo desizaun no konhecimentu baziku konaba oinsa bele sai kandidatu iha eleisaun oin mai hanesan membru konstituanti." La’o Hamutuk, Institutu Timor Lorosa’e ba Analiza no Monitor Reconstrusaun

Jun 29 SMH: People to have their say - but so will the UN  News added June 29
"The United Nations has told the people of East Timor they will be virtually self-governing from September 15 - but that the UN will decide who will form the government. The head of the UN administration in the country, Mr Sergio Vieira de Mello, appealed yesterday to political parties to accept a government of national unity after elections on August 30 for a constituent assembly, or parliament. He indicated he had the right to appoint such a government, although he added that the new Cabinet would “broadly reflect” the results of the elections." Mark Dodd, Herald Correspondent in Dili

May 2001 AsiaFound: Nat'l Survey of Voter Knowledge  Foreword and executive summary added June 28
"This report presents the findings of the first ever random nationwide survey to assess East Timorese political opinions and knowledge. ... The survey involved 1,558 in-person interviews of potential voters in a total of 392 Aldeia in 196 villages in all the 13 districts of East Timor. It addresses critical issues related to the national mood; voter and civic education issues; access to media; language use and preference; and demographics." The Asia Foundation

May 20 FRETILIN: Electoral Commitment 2001  Position statement added July 5
"The struggle of our People was always aimed at restoring independence. FRETILIN, as the driving force of the resistance, believed in the unwavering capacity of the Maubere People to resist and to win. ... Together we will Restore Independence and Free the People." FRETILIN: Frente Revolucionária Do Timor-Leste Independente

April 2001 ACFOA: Walsh: East Timor's Political Party Profiles Complete text of report [150KB] added May 22
"East Timor is now entering the last, crucial stage of the transition process to full independence. ... The scene is now set, however, for the political parties to take their rightful place under the spotlight as key players in the democratic process. This is a healthy and positive development which excesses by some should not be permitted to undermine. ... How many parties will contest the election? Who are their leaders and how does one contact them? How have they changed from previous times? What ideas and policies do they have for East Timor’s development, foreign policy and so on?"  Pat Walsh, Human rights consultant, Australian Council for Overseas Aid

Bahasa Indonesia:
Maret 2001 ACFOA: Partai-Partai Dan Kelompok-Kelompok Politik Di Timor Timur  Téks [150KB] added June 29
"Timor-Timur kini tengah memasuki tahap akhir yang penting dari proses transisi menuju kemerdekaan penuh. ... Tetapi sekarang partai-partai boleh menduduki ‘centre stage’ untuk memainkan peranan penting mereka dalam suatu proses demokrasi. Ini adalah suatu kemajuan yang positif dan sehat di mana kelebihan seseorang tidak menjadi faktor yang melemahkan. ... Berapa banyak partai yang akan bertanding dalam pemilihan? Siapa pemimpin partai-partai tersebut dan bagaimana mereka dapat dihubungi? Seberapa berbeda partai-partai ini dibandingkan dengan yang sebelumnya? Apa ide-ide dan kebijakan mereka terhadap pembangunan di Timor Timur, kebijakan luar negeri dan sebagainya?" Pat Walsh, Badan Bantuan Luar Negeri Australia

Mar 17 SMH: UN fears sabotage of ETimor elections  News added Mar 20
"The UN memo says CPD-RDTL supporters had clashed with members of the East Timorese pro-independence Fretilin party on Atauro on February 22, the same time as the seven Indonesians [suspected spies] were seen there. Last week, Mr Gusmao warned of links between senior RDTL officials and shadowy Indonesian army intelligence agents." Mark Dodd, Herald Correspondent in Dili

Mar 16 CNRT/NCP: Gusmao: Speech at signing of the Electoral Regulation  Speech added Mar 18
"[This is the] English version of the speech of the Presdient of CNRT/CN and National Council (NC) at the signing of the Electoral Regulation for the forthcoming and first elections to be held on August the 30th this year. The original speech was said in Portuguese and translated into English by the Media Unit of CNRT/CN Presidency." Ines Alemeida, Head, Media Unit CNRT/CN

Mar 15 CNRT/CNP: Gusmão: O Regulamento Assinado pelo Dr Sérgio De Mello  Speech added Mar 18
"Intervenção do Presidente do CNRT/CN, Xanana Gusmão na ocasião da assinatura, pelo Dr Sergio Vieira de Mello, Administrador Transitório, do regulamento sobre a eleição de uma Assembleia Constituinte para a elaboração de uma constituiçâo para um Timor Leste independente e democrático" CNRT/Congresso Nacional Presidência

Mar 5 OTL: Partidos políticos e Forças pró-independência  Report
"Oito partidos apresentam-se sob a bandeira da independência. Dos cinco partidos criados em 1974, quatro foram levados a colaborar, mais ou menos, com o ocupante indonésio. A FRETILIN sempre se opôs à ocupação. Consciente da vantagem que adquiriu, a FRETILIN sente-se limitada na frente comum proposta por Xanana Gusmão, e quer partir à conquista do poder. Mas para alguns isso faz renascer a lembrança da guerra civil de 1974 e provoca apelos angustiados de Xanana Gusmão a favor da unidade nacional."  Observatório Timor Leste

Mar 5 ETO: Political parties and Pro-Independence Forces  Report updated Apr 27
"There are 8 parties behind the independence flag. Of the five parties set up in 1974, four eventually collaborated, to a greater or lesser extent, with the Indonesian occupiers. FRETILIN always maintained its opposition to the occupation. Aware of its present advantage, FRETILIN now feels restricted as part of the united front proposed by Xanana Gusmão, and wants to leave it to conquer its own territory. For some, however, talk of such a move only rekindles memories of the 1974 civil war and impels Xanana Gusmão to appeal for national unity." East Timor Observatory

Feb 24 AGE: Date set for East Timor election  News added Mar 1

Feb 22 STL & TP: Political Party Registration / No Dual Citizenships for Party Leaders  News from ETimor added Feb 23

Jan 24 GLW: `Fretilin will win first Timor election'  News added Jan 25
"We expect over 50% of the first elected parliament -- definitely ... [Fretilin is] in the best position to promote tolerance and democracy" Estanislau da Silva, member of Fretilin's central committee

Nov 13 2000 The East Timorese NGO Forum: Meeting with UN Security Council
"Is UNTAET committed to the participation of East Timorese civil society or only to consultation in the performance of the mandate?
The National Council is not a democratically elected parliament. UNTAET should not treat it as such. Until there is a democratically elected Congress, UNTAET must make greater efforts to ensure the participation of interested East Timorese groups in the law and policy making processes." Forum Nacional ONG Timor Lorosa'e / The East Timor National NGO Forum

BD: FRETILIN - Revolutionary Front for an Independent East Timor / Frente Revolucionaria do Timor Leste Independente - A collection of recent speeches, documents, statements, news and reports

BD: National Council of Timorese Resistance / Conselho Nacional de Resistência Timorense (CNRT) - A collection of recent speeches, statements, news and reports

BD: Pro-autonomy Movements / Pró autonomia Movimentos - A collection of recent information, reports, articles and news

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