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Subject: Re: REU - U.S. concerned about violence in East Timor
Date: Tue, 24 Nov 1998 11:46:19 -0500
From: East Timor Action Network <etan-outreach@igc.apc.org>

Full State Dept Q & A:

Monday, November 23, 1998 STATE DEPARTMENT REGULAR BRIEFING

BRIEFER: JAMIE RUBIN, DEPARTMENT SPOKESMAN

Q Can I put to you a question about Indonesia?

MR. RUBIN: Yes.

Q There have been in the last days some reports about a possible new massacre by Indonesian troops in East Timor, and because of that the Portuguese government has suspended the contacts with the Indonesians under supervision of the United Nations. Do you have any additional information about that? Are you concerned about that?

MR. RUBIN: Yes. We understand there has been an increase in violence in East Timor in recent weeks. Three Indonesian soldiers were killed and as many as 13 were taken hostage during an attack on an Indonesian outpost November the 9th. ICRC representatives in East Timor report that large numbers of civilians have taken refuge in churches and fled villages as the Indonesian military swept the area in an attempt to free hostages and track down rebels. There have been credible reports of civilian deaths in the military sweep, but we do not have confirmed numbers. The Indonesian state news agency reported that the military operation has been stopped. We have not been able to confirm that. We are disturbed at reports of renewed violence in East Timor. We call on all sides to refrain from violence and to take all measures necessary to assure that civilians are not mistreated or denied access to necessities.

Q Thanks.

At 03:19 PM 11/23/1998 -0700, you wrote: >U.S. concerned about violence in East Timor > > > > > U.S. concerned about violence in East Timor

> (Reuters; 11/23/98)

> > WASHINGTON, Nov 23 (Reuters) - The United States on Monday expressed concern >about an upsurge of violence in the troubled territory of East Timor, citing >"credible reports" of civilian deaths during a recent military sweep.

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