Subject: UNOTIL Daily Media Review 23 June 2005


Daily Press Review

Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Daily Media Review Thursday, 23 June 2005

US offers support on probe into East Timor atrocities

The United States has offered full support in working with East Timor and Indonesia to make the Truth and Friendship Commission, formed by the two countries, as credible as possible as it investigates atrocities in East Timor in 1999, said US Ambassador at Large for War Crimes, Pierre Prosper. Prosper said the US is committed to working with the two governments and the United Nations to produce a good outcome so both governments can move forward and come to terms with the past.

Talking to reporters at Dili airport before leaving East Timor after a two-day visit, he said a lot more work needs to be done to not only find the truth but to bring the episode to an end. "The US needs to remain committed to working with all parties to try to find the truth and this creates the environment where justice has an opportunity to succeed," said Prosper.

During the visit he met with government leaders, prosecutors and UN officials, as well as the families of victims and survivors of the 1999 conflict.

"In other words, we would like to see in here, in this State, the place where the people of East Timor and elsewhere are able to attend to hear the testimony, to hear the evidence. Because the more the people are involved, the greater likelihood there is for acceptance of the process," said Prosper.

"So our main objective as we look forward is that whatever steps are taken now must be steps that lead us to a credible, acceptable conclusion. We do not want to see more mechanisms," he added.

Meanwhile, Mr Prosper said the US has already received a copy of the UN Commission of Experts' report and his government is carefully study the document in order to present its feedback. (Kyodo, Timor Post, STL)

Prosecutor General Denied Receiving Documents from SCU

Prosecutor General, Longuinhos Monteiro, yesterday said that he is yet to receive the official documents from the United Nations Special Panel on Serious Crimes for the crimes committed in 1999. He said that according to the decision of the Security Council, the documents would be officially handed over to the Public Ministry through him.

Monteiro said the documents were supposed to be handed over by the international staff, adding "they had left without advising about the work they did".

The Timorese Prosecutor General also said that he would not receive and sign anything that he believes the international staffs have not processed it properly. (Timor Post)

Government of TL and UNOTIL Continue to use Merpati Airlines

Merpati Airlines District Manager, Maxi Leo Mandagi, said even though United Nations' Headquarters has issued an instruction for UNOTIL officials not to use the airline for official trips, Timor-Leste's government continues to use it for both official and regular visits.

Mandagi said the Indonesian government was very upset with the instructions put out by UNOTIL. Director General of the Indonesian communications asked the ICAO to withdraw the assessment on Merpati Airlines operations. According to Maxi, in response to such instructions, his company has made some steps in meetings with all the ambassadors who are based in Dili. The result of the meeting, according to Maxi, was that all of the ambassadors and the Indonesian representatives stated that they would continue to use Merpati Airlines. (Timor Post)

Local Government Receives Equipment From UNOTIL

The local government of Oecussi District received equipment from UNOTIL worth US$71,000 reported Timor Post on Thursday. A ceremony was held at UNOTIL's office in the district with the participation of the District Administrator, representative of Land and Property Department as well as UNOTIL's Regional Administrator Officer, Ragen Totonawaga. (Timor Post)

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