Subject: LUSA: Ramos Horta Preparing International Advisory Commission for Transition to Independence
Date: Sat, 20 Feb 1999 09:02:00 -0500
From: "Sharon R.A. Scharfe" <pet@web.net>

17 FEV 99 - 12:39 East Timor: Ramos Horta Preparing International Advisory Commission for Transition to Independence

Macau, Feb. 17 (Lusa) - Senior East Timorese resistance leader Jose Ramos Horta said Wednesday he was preparing the formation of an international commission of economic and financial experts to aid in the territory's reconstruction. Speaking to reporters in Macau, Ramos Horta, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, said he would call on his "contacts" around the world for advice on investments and on the creation of a future government to oversee a transition to independence from Indonesia. In Macau to meet with Governor Vasco Rocha Vieira, Ramos Horta said he planned to visit Thailand, the Philippines, Singapore and Hong Kong during March in search of support. He said he would also visit China, Japan and Taiwan. Ramos Horta reiterated his position that independence should follow a transition period of "about three years." He said such a transition should be carried out under the auspices of the United Nations, with Portugal playing a "central role." "If Indonesia wishes to have a role during this period," he added, "it would obviously have a place, especially to repair the hurt it caused to the country and its people."

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