Subject: UNOTIL Daily Media Review 3 August 2006

[Poster's note: International and other articles already sent out to the east-timor list (info@etan.org) have been removed from below.]

UNOTIL Daily Media Review

Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Daily Media Review Thursday, 03 August 2006

National Media Reports

One Person Injured Following Attack

One person was injured and two kidnapped by an armed civilian group following attacks to the population in Holbese village, sub-district of Bobonaro. Minister of Interior, Alcino Barris told the media he received information from PNTL commander in Bobonaro saying an armed civilian group threatened and attacked people in that area but PNTL is currently investigating the case and Barris believes the culprits will eventually be captured. The injured person is receiving medical treatment in Maliana hospital. (STL)

The UN Will Independently Respond To The Aspirations of The People: Hasegawa

SRSG was quoted by Timor Post that the UN will respond to the aspirations of all the people independently, asking the Timorese to collaborate and to maintain a calm and let justice take its course.

According to Timor Post, SRSG Hasegawa stated in the press release that “ I appeal to all to be calm and observe the rule of law of the nation. The International Community is aware and will respond to the aspirations and demands for justice, a just and fair treatment for all the people allegedly involved in the acts of crimes during the period that led to the violent incidents in the months of April and May this year including 28-29 April and 23, 24 and 25 May.” The Head of UN Mission in Timor-Leste further said the mechanisms would be provided to carry out an investigation of the fact and circumstances relevant to the aforementioned incidents, through the Secretariat for the Independent Special Commission For Inquiry in Dili under the leadership of Luc Côte, the Executive Director who plans to present their report on October 7 2006.

Hasegawa further said the UN will continue to provide assistance to the Prosecutor-General’s Office to strengthen the capacity of the institution in order to carry out the work independently and with integrity according to the rule of the State. He appealed to the people of Timor-Leste to have the courage to open their hearts and have faith in starting the reconciliation process with their neighbors, friends from the districts either east or west and to work together to achieve their objective democratically, adding that with the upcoming general elections next year it is important that there is peace and stability in the nation for the elections to be totally free and democratic and without fear, violence and intimidation.

Australia Troops Are Not Leaving TL: Slater

Brigadier General Mick Slater shot down rumors that Australian troops are going to leave East Timor soon. “We have heard the rumors but it is not true; we will stay here to protect the people as long as the East Timorese government wants us to stay, ”Slater said. He stated that a few Australian troops have left with the ship but most of them stayed with armored cars and helicopters to provide protection to the Timorese people. He said that the international police from Australia, Malaysia, New Zeland and Portugal (GNR) are also in Timor-Leste to maintain security and stability, helping to normalize the crisis situation by providing information. (STL, DN, TP)

Identity Lost If Church And Customary Authorities Ignored: Ramos-Horta

Prime Minister Ramos-Horta said under the Mari Alkatiri leadership he repeatedly urged the government to work with the church but he was ignored because he was the Foreign Minister. He was told by some to focus on foreign negotiations or reconciliation, Ramos-Horta told participants during a dialogue with members of the Church in Baucau Diocese on Wednesday. Ramos-Horta further said whenever he spoke of his respect for the Church, he was accused of conspiring with that institution. He said that the government must study traditional values and implement them with democracy values. He stressed that he became Prime Minister as a result of the crisis and was not elected democratically. He said that his government has nine months to implement a budget at the value of US$315 million to improve the condition of the nation. The Minister said the State requires partnership with the civil society to work together with the support of the international community, adding that it is important for the State to be in partnership with the church to form the Timorese identity. He has acknowledged that the State institutions are young and therefore the government is conscious that it must work with institutions like the Church and customary authorities. Therefore, he said, in the next three months the government will hold discussions with heads of villages to mobilize the society towards the development process. The new Prime Minister said the recent problems were the result of the government being ignorant of the problems developing which began in 2003/2004. He said the government did not have the vision to honestly address those problems. He added, that if Timor-Leste had had a strong institution or a good police force to prevent the situation, the conflict in Dili would not have occurred. But, he said, this was not the case; the Ministry of Interior was not intellectually capable of leading the police and worse, PNTL had been used by the former Minister of Interior and a few secretaries of regions for political interest rather than for that of state or national interest. As for F-FDTL, the new head of the government said that had they not left their headquarters, their prestige would have been higher but since they followed the orders given by the former Prime Minister, they lost their prestige. He added, that as Minister of Defence, he wants to build bridges and heal the wounds between the two institutions, lift their morale and work on dialogue from the top to the bottom with the objective of pulling Timor-Leste out from this crisis. ( STL)

Court Must Be Fair With Major Alfredo

Unidade Juventude Transparensia Justisa (UJTJ) requests the court to carry out a just process regarding Major Alfredo Reinado’s case in order to avoid ‘mafia law’ in the justice system in Timor-Leste. During a meeting with President Gusmao on Tuesday (1/8) the youths stressed they want a transparent process that will reveal those responsible for the crimes committed during the crisis and the leaders who have distributed guns and ammunition to the population to kill each other. According to the group, youths were the victims of 28 April and 25 May and they demand that the State be responsible for those cases, and that the justice system urgently make a decision and condemn those responsible for the distribution of weapons. They also asked for clarification from Prime Minister Ramos-Horta regarding his statement that “youths with long hair, unwashed are the ones burning and looting.” The youth also made an appeal for those who have burned houses not to continue hiding in the IPDs camps but to give themselves up as is just. They also want a government team to visit the camps and persuade those people whose houses have not been destroyed to return home. (TP)

International Media Reports

Senior US official meets East Timor's president

3 August 2006 - ABC Asia Pacific TV / Radio Australia America's assistant Secretary of State, Christopher Hill, has met East Timor's President, Xanana Gusmao, in Dili. Mr Hill, who is also to meet newly-appointed Prime Minister, Jose Ramos-Horta on his two-day trip, is the most senior US official to visit East Timor since it became independent in 2002. The US official says he and President Gusmao discussed the challenges facing East Timor's government, and issues such as unemployment and the United Nations next mission in the tiny nation. A small UN mission in Dili was due to end in May, but had its mandate extended to August 20 with a larger mission expected to be deployed from then. Mr Hill says at the end of the day, the people of East Timor need to solve their own problems and not the United Nations. In a statement issued by the US embassy in Dili, Mr Hill also expressed his sympathy to the East Timorese for losses caused by the recent violence in which at least 21 people were killed. (ABC Asia Pacific TV / Radio Australia)

National News Sources Timor Post (TP) Radio Timor-Leste (RTL) Suara Timor Lorosae (STL) Diario Tempo (DT) Diario Nacional Lia Foun (LF) Televisaun Timor-Leste [TVTL]

These Items Do Not Reflect the Position or Views of the United Nations. UNOTIL Public Information Office.

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