Subject: AFP: Indon troops disguised as militiamen joined in E. Timor attack

Received from Joyo Indonesian News

Agence France-Presse June 25, 2002

Indonesian troops disguised as militiamen joined in East Timor attack

Indonesian troops disguised as militiamen took part in a bloody attack on pro-independence refugees in East Timor in September 1999, prosecutors have told a human rights court.

The accusation of direct military involvement in the slaughter was made in the charge sheet against Lieutenant Colonel Sujarwo, then commander of the Dili military district.

He is the 12th military, police or civilian official to appear before the rights court, which is holding trials over a series of massacres in East Timor before and after its August 1999 vote to separate from Indonesia.

On Monday Lieutenant Colonel Endar Priyanto, who was military commander of the East Timor capital Dili in April 1999, was accused of crimes against humanity by failing to prevent a massacre of 12 civilians that month.

Despite widespread claims that local pro-Jakarta militias were organised and directed by Indonesian forces, officials testifying at the rights court have portrayed the bloodshed as clashes between local factions which they were powerless to prevent.

Prosecutor Hotman Ambarita, reading the charges, said that on September 6, 1999, pro-integration supporters "including militias and troops disguised as militias", came to the residence of Dili Bishop Carlos Ximenes Filipe Belo. They forced independence supporters who were sheltering there to come out.

Ambarita said that after the scared refugees had gathered in a park in front of the residence, an order to attack was heard. The militias and soldiers fired at the refugees, leaving two people killed.

As well as the 12 whose trials have started, six others are due to appear before the rights court. They are, or will be, accused of crimes against humanity for failing to halt massacres of civilians.

If convicted, they face sentences ranging from 10 years in prison to death.

Local militiamen, created and supported by Indonesian military elements, waged a campaign of intimidation and revenge before and after East Timor's independence vote.

At least 1,000 East Timorese are estimated to have died and whole towns were burnt to the ground.

Chief Judge Andi Samsan Nganro adjourned Sujarwo's case until Monday next week.

Back to June menu

World Leaders Contact List
Human Rights Violations in East Timor
Main Postings Menu

Note: For those who would like to fax "the powers that be" - CallCenter is a Native 32-bit Voice Telephony software application integrated with fax and data communications... and it's free of charge! Download from