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Subject: AFP: Bishop calls for E. Timorese dialogue to include political topics
Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 12:26:52 GMT
From: hops <hops@gn.apc.org>

Received from Joyo

Bishop calls for East Timorese dialogue to include political topics

DILI, East Timor, Oct 28 (AFP) - Roman Catholic Bishop Basilio de Nascimento of the Baucau diocese in East Timor Wednesday called for political topics to be included for the first time in UN-sponsored intra-Timorese talks.

"I hope that the upcoming AETD talks can come up with a format for the settlement of the East Timor question and therefore political issues should also be discussed by the AETD," Nascimento said in Semase, Baucau district, east of here.

He was referring to the fourth All-Inclusive Intra East Timorese Dialogue (AIETD) held under the aegis of UN Secretary General Kofi Annan in Kastel Krumbach, Austria, from October 31 to November 2.

Nascimento, who shares the church's leadership in the former Portuguese colony of East Timor with Noble laureate Bishop Carlos Ximenes Felipe Belo who heads the Dili diocese, urged all sides not to resort to violence.

"I call on armed forces personnel and on guerrillas in the forests, to restrain themselves and not shoot each other while the dialogue is taking place," Nascimento said.

Indonesia unilaterally annexed the former Portugese colony of East Timor in 1976 after a bloody invasion the year before. The UN and most countries have not recognized the move and still view Lisbon as the official administrator.

The United Nations, Jakarta, and Lisbon have held tripartite discussions since 1983 to try to settle the issue, without success.

The AIETD has been held as part of the tripartite talks but its discussions have so far been confined to cultural issues.

Meanwhile, a source here quoted deputy regional commander of the East Timorese pro-independence movement Fretilin, Lere, as calling on young people not to waste time staging protests to demand the resignation of the Jakarta-appointed governor of East Timor, Jose Osorio Abilio Soares.

"There is no need to hold demonstrations which will only bring East Timor to ruins ... If they are only to bring down Abilio (Soares) and demand an end to corruption, collusion and nepotism, they are unnecessary," Lere told the source.

He warned some pro-Indonesian youths had begun staging anti-Indonesian demonstration claiming to act on behalf of the pro-independence movement.

Thousands of protesters in East Timor have peacefully called for Soares to resign for threatening to fire East Timorese civil servants who did not support a Jakarta proposal for broad-based autonomy for the territory.


TAPOL, the Indonesia Human Rights Campaign, 8 Hop Gardens London WC2N 4EH Tel: 171 497 5355 Fax: 171 4975313 Email: hops@gn.apc.org Defending the rights of the victims of oppression in Indonesia, East Timor, West Papua and Aceh, 1973-1998

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