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Subject: LUSA: Referendum Unlikely to Work, Says Alatas
Date: Fri, 2 Oct 1998 18:14:03 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Sharon R.A. Scharfe" <>

02 OUT 98 - 13:23 East Timor: Referendum Unlikely to Work, Says Alatas

New York, Oct. 2 (Lusa) - Indonesian Foreign Minister Ali Alatas said Thursday that a referendum on the status of Jakarta-annexed East Timor might sound good but was unlikely to produce a viable solution to the conflict. "A referendum may not be a conclusive or peaceful solution," Alatas said, five days before resuming negotiations with Portugal under UN auspices on the territory's future.

The next round of talks will center on Jakarta's proposal, made in August, to grant wide autonomy to the territory which it invaded in 1975. Indonesia has so far refused East Timorese nationalist and Portuguese demands for a referendum on the future status of the territory. - Lusa

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