Subject: Today's meeting in Dili
Date: Sun, 28 Jun 1998 19:18:49 +1000
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Geoffrey Heard)
MEDIA RELEASE For immediate release: 7.15 pm AEST, Sunday 28/6/98
EU ambassadors meet people power in Dili
SYDNEY: Riot police backed down in Dili today when thousands of East Timorese students and men, women and children from Dili city and surrounding villages took to the streets shouting "Viva Timor, Viva Portugal" in a massive anti-Indonesian demonstration.
The student organisers summoned Manuel Carrascal„o, leader of the Movement for Reconciliation and Unity for the Liberation of East Timor, to head the march from the university back to his own home in a show of strength for the benefit of a delegation of European Union ambassadors scheduled to meet there with the Movement leadership.
As the delegation, comprising the ambassadors from Britain, the Netherlands and Austria, arrived at the meeting, they heard an impassioned plea for freedom from oppression from the chanting East Timorese bearing placards and banners reading "Indonesia out, Portugal inuntil we are ready".
The meeting was scheduled for an hour before lunch, but stretched to six, including a spontaneous lunch with hundreds of Movement supporters. Speakers begged the European Union to help rid East Timor of the Indonesia and its army. They said they wanted a Portuguese and international administration to take over until Portugal had completed the decolonisation process and East Timor was in a position to determine its own future. At the end, the British ambassador assured the gathering that he and his colleagues would report in full on what they had seen and heard in Dili. Tonight, the streets of Dili are calm. One Movement supporter was shot dead early yesterday in a clash between a Movement group and a pro-Indonesian group of soldiers, Javanese settlers and East Timorese reportedly preparing an attack on Bishop Ximenes Belo.
Two other Movement supporters were reported stabbed to death in other clashes, and an unsuccessful stabbing attack was made on Manuel Carrascal„o when he went to Dili airport to welcome the European Union delegation. In Sydney, the world President of the Timorese Democratic Union (UDT) party, Jo„o Carrascal„o, this afternoon applauded the Dili demonstrators, saying they were showing the world the determination of ordinary East Timorese to rid themselves of Indonesian oppression. MORE EAST TOMORESE PEOPLE POWER2
He said UDT fully supported the call by the Movement for the removal of Indonesian troops and a period of Portuguese and international Administration to complete the decolonisation process. Mr Carrascal„o said UDT would be lobbying the United Nations, the European Union and individual nations to win support for removal of Indonesian troops from East Timor, the completion of decolonisation process by Portugal, and self-determination for East Timorese.
Tonight, Jo„o Carrascal„o was flying to New York for meetings on the East Timor issue at the United Nations. FURTHER INFORMATION: Jo„o Carrascal„o, President, UDT % 0418 767 101 Issued on behalf of UDT by Geoffrey Heard & Associates Melbourne, AUSTRALIA - % +61 3 9583 0788
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