|Subject: Xanana in W Timor
Last Update: Wednesday, December 28, 2005. 9:27pm (AEDT)
Gusmao opens West Timor consulate
East Timor's President Xanana Gusmao has formally opened a consulate in Indonesian West Timor.
The ceremony was attended by the former pro-Indonesian militia chief in East Timor, Eurico Guterres, in a show of improving relations after the militias' looting, arson and killing sprees during the 1999 independence ballot.
During the ceremony Mr Gusmao said the mission should serve as a means to foster closer relations between the two countries.
He also reiterated a call for 16,000 East Timorese refugees including ex-members of the militias to come home, saying their safety would be guaranteed.
The United Nations refugee agency plans to close its humanitarian mission to the Indonesian province of West Timor at the end of this week.
Dec 28 19:35 Timor Lorosae Opens Consulate in Kupang, Planning Another on Denpasar
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Timor Lorosae government which opened a consulate in Kupang, East Nastenggara, on Wednesday is also planning to establish a consulate in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesian Foreign Minister Hassan Wirayuda said.
"Not only in Kupang, Timor Leste will also open a consulate in Denpasar, Bali, because many East Timorese need to transit in Denpasar," Hassan said here Wednesday, after installing 21 officials of his ministry into new positions.
Timor Leste President Xanana Gusmao was in Kupamg on Wednesday to inaugurate his government`s consulate there.
Hassan said the Indonesian government had agreed to Timor Leste`s intention to open its second consulate in Indonesia but did not know when exactly it would happen.
"It will still take some time as they must go through the process of selecting and appointing a consul," he said.
He explained the tasks of a consulate were, among others, to deal with its citizens` problems and to encourage bilateral economic relations. (*)
XANANA: RECONCILIATION OF TIMOR LESTE PEOPLE WILL CONTINUE
12/27/2005 08:16:21 PM EST Antara
Kupang, Dec 27 (ANTARA) - President of Timor Leste Kay Rala Xanana Gusmao said that the process of reconciliation among the East Timorese people would continue, although an appeal for their return was no longer a priority.
"In the past we came to ask them to return and build East Timor. But now it is different. If they still wish to go back, everybody in Timor Leste will be warmly welcoming them," Xanana said in a dialogue with East Nusatenggara Governor Piet A Tallo SH here on Tuesday.
Xanana also told the governor that East Timor had a commitment not to call on the former East Timorese citizens who are living in Indonesia, including those in East Nusatenggara, to return to their homeland.
The commitment was designed to let ex Timorese citizens to have the freedom to make a decision and to respond to the past conflict. But Xanana did not disclose his country's commitment to help the Indonesian government solve the remaining problems on East Timor in East Nusatenggara.
In fact, the problems are posing a serious burden to Indonesia, especially East Nusatenggara which has very busy handling ex-East Timorese refugees.
In the meantime, Governor Piet Tallo said the East Timorese government should play an active role in promoting the reconciliation among the people of East Timor by repatriation programs or calling on them to return home.
"Reconciliation through a repatriation program should run smoothly, as the handling of humanitarian affairs has no time limit. Take the protracted conflict in Palestine, for instance, which is still unsolved," he said.
Tally further disclosed that the ex East Timorese citizens who are now living in East Nusatenggara consisted of 24,524 families, or 104,436 people out of the total 284,414 people who abandoned East Timor on September 4, 1999.
Those who joined repatriation programs did not include those who crossed the border illegally, and never returned to East Nusatenggara.
The ex-East Timorese citizens who joined the repatriation programs consisted of 18,479 families, or 55,559 persons, while those who joined the transmigration programs since 2001 comprised 329 families, or 1,165 people.
(THROUGH ASIA PULSE)