Subject: 35 Prosecutors Appointed to Work on KPP HAM Case

Also: Jakarta vows trials over E.Timor atrocities

Indonesian Observer 16th February 2000

Prosecutors on human rights case appointed

JAKARTA (IO) — The Attorney General Office (AGO) announced yesterday it has set up a team of 35 prosecutors that will deal with the assessment of the recommendations made by the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights (KPP HAM).

However, the team is yet to determine a tentative schedule for the summoning of former Coordinating Minister for Politics and Security Affairs General Wiranto.

The team, which consists of outstanding prosecutors, will be headed by Junior Attorney General for Criminal Affair MA Rahman and Junior Attorney General for Intelligence Affairs Yusuf Kartanegara.

AGO’s head of public relations RJ Suhandojo said all the prosecutors are staff with the Attorney General Office. "Starting today, they resume their activities," he said, adding that the team is to be helped by some experts.

As for the investigative team, it will be headed by Attorney General Marzuki Darusman. The team will consist of individuals from the Police office, Prosecutors, and Military Police. Selection of these people is underway Suhandojo elaborated that the main task of the AGO team of assessment is to study the recommendations made by KPP HAM.

"At present there is no plan to summon Wiranto," he was quoted by detik.com.

Commenting on the demand of the Military Advocacy Team’s Chairman Adnan Buyung Nasution that he will file a lawsuit against KPP HAM for announcing to the public the identity of his client, Suhandojo said he has received the demand, but the Attorney General is yet to give a response. "There is no compulsion to fulfill that demand. It is needed merely for AGO’s internal affairs," he added.


Jakarta vows trials over E.Timor atrocities By Terry Friel

JAKARTA, Feb 16 (Reuters) - Indonesia, under the threat of an international war crimes tribunal, vowed on Wednesday to prosecute those behind last year's atrocities in East Timor.

After talks with President Abdurrahman Wahid and Vice-President Megawati Sukarnoputri in Jakarta, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan said calls for a U.N. tribunal would be revived if Indonesia failed to honour its promise.

But he praised Wahid's wide-ranging reforms after just four months in power and his efforts to curb the military's powerful political power.

Wahid has already been forced to suspend former armed forces chief General Wiranto from the cabinet and order an investigation by the attorney-general after a human rights inquiry implicated Wiranto and five other generals in the bloodshed.

U.N. TRIBUNAL STILL POSSIBLE

Annan said there would be no need for an international human rights tribunal on East Timor if Indonesia brought those responsible to trial, sending a clear message such violence would not be tolerated.

``Of course, if that doesn't happen, the council has a right to revert to it,'' he said, referring to the U.N. Security Council.

But one senior diplomat called the threat little more than a bluff, saying China for one would never back such a move.

Asked about his earlier promise of a pardon if Wiranto faced trial and was convicted, Wahid said: ``We will prosecute those involved. And then later the decision would tell us what to do.''

Wiranto, who denies any wrongdoing, led the military when pro-Jakarta militias backed by Indonesian troops went on a campaign of killing and destruction last September after East Timorese voted overwhelmingly to throw off Indonesia's rule.

Analysts have said Wahid would be unable to resist domestic and foreign pressure to put Wiranto and other generals on trial, despite likely stiff opposition from hardline elements of the armed forces.

But they say his offer of a pardon may help keep the lid on the fractious military.

Wahid received a boost on Wednesday with the release of official data showing the economy back in the black, but only just.

The statistics bureau said gross domestic product grew 0.2 percent in 1999 -- better than the 0.2 percent drop analysts expected -- but said growth could pass four percent in 2000.

During his two-day visit Annan has spoken out strongly in support of Wahid in a clear signal to the military and the president's critics that the international community expects him to be given a chance to cement democracy in the world's fourth most populous nation.

``The government has given a clear impression it is committed to reform and I think the signs are all around us that serious efforts are being made to transform the society,'' Annan said.

``For the first time in many decades, the civilian authority over the military is being asserted. Any major transformation of the kind that we are witnessing is going to take time.''

SEPARATISM MAJOR DANGER

But he warned that separatist demands around the disparate archipelago posed one of its greatest challenges.

``It may well feel to some of you as if Indonesia's very existence is under attack from covert forces which... want to break it up,'' Annan told a business lunch, urging all sides to renounce violence and heal the wounds of the past.

Annan did not elaborate, but Jakarta has often blamed mysterious ``dark forces'' for inciting trouble around the country, sometimes with the help of foreigners.

Calls for independence have mounted around Indonesia since East Timorese voted to break away last August.

Three civilians in the easternmost province of Irian Jaya were wounded on Wednesday when police fired on a pro-independence rally, residents and hospital officials said.

Annan is on his first visit to Indonesia and he will also fly to East Timor on Thursday, where he has said he would assess how to speed up the U.N. operation to rebuild the battered territory.

But plans for Annan to visit thousands of refugees still stranded in neighbouring West Timor have been abandoned, although a U.N. official said the move had nothing to do with heightened security concerns in the area.

``It has been cancelled due to logistical problems,'' U.N. spokesman Refik Hodzic told reporters in Dili.

On Monday, Indonesian police in West Timor fired shots into the air to stop an aid convoy and briefly held two aid workers at gunpoint in an apparent extortion bid, U.N. officials said.


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