Subject: UNMIT Daily Media Review 27 August 2007

[Poster's note: Repeats of international articles already sent out to the east-timor list (info@etan.org) have been removed.]

Monday, 27 August 2007

UNMIT – MEDIA MONITORING

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National Media Reports

Horta: too early to be sorry to the IDPs

Speaking to the journalists on Friday (24/8) President José Ramos Horta said that the IDPs have become victims for the second time.

“They have twice become victims for both the crisis and the action of radical Fretilin members who threat them everyday,” said President Horta while talking to an NGO Forum IN Dili.

Separately, the member of national parliament from the Social Democratic Party (PSD), Mario Viegas Carrascalão, said that some peoples’ discontent following the president’s decision on the new government formation could create an unstable situation. (TP)

980 police officers to be active

The members of PNTL who completed their screening following last year’s crisis are now on active duty in Dili.

The PNTL Commander-Designated, Afonso de Jesus said that 980 PNTL members are now on duty in Dili, this excludes members who in the process of being screened. (TP)

ISF to collaborate with the local authority in security escalation

The Chief Village of Afaloikai, Henrique de Carvalho has asked the International Stabilization Forces (ISF) that are allocated in Uatolari, Viqueque district to collaborate with the local authorities to secure the district.

Speaking to the journalists on Friday (24/8) in his residence, Mr. Carvalho said that if ISF, UIR and F-FDTL withdraw from the region, the problems will reemerge. (TP)

Autonomist government, a rumor

Prime Minister Xanana Gusmão said there does not need to be a law passed to check the background of parliamentarians because the accusations that the government is unconstitutional are based on rumours only.

He said that rather than waste funding on this, which will have no benefit for the people, it is better to forget the past and come together to discuss the future of the people in this country. (TP)

Bishop Basilio: “I believe, Fretilin will not destroy the efforts of 24 years”

Bishop Basilio Nascimento of Baucau Diocese believes that Fretilin will not destroy the independence benefits it fought 24 years to get.

“I think that they should know and consider that Fretilin’s struggle and bloodshed for 24 years should not be destroyed,” said Bishop Nascimento in Baucau.

Commenting to the accusation that the Catholic Church supports the Alliance government, the bishop said that the Catholic Church never backed any party. (DN)

President submit Alfredo and Petitioners’ case to Xanana

President José Ramos-Horta will submit the case of Alfredo Reinado Alves and petitioners officially on Tuesday (28/8) to the Prime Minister Xanana Gusmão to try and solve both problems peacefully.

“Alfredo is ready to have dialogue to solve this problem,” said President José Ramos-Horta on Friday (24/8) after meeting with students in the Presidential Palace in Caicoli, Dili. (STL)

Longuinhos, does not fulfill the criteria to be PNTL commander

The member of national parliament from Social Democratic Party (PSD), Mario Viegas Carrascalão said that the Attorney –General Longuinhos Monteiro does not qualify to be the PNTL commander, even though he knows much about the police force.

He revealed that the new PNTL commander should have a vision for reform to restore the reputation that was ruined in last year’s crisis and if a commander has no credibility the reform goals will not be achieved.

“We should observe that during his roles as the Attorney-general he failed to resolve a lot of problems which remain controversial, such as the case of Alfredo Reinado,” said Mr. Mario. (STL)

Furthermore, another MP from CNRT, Aderito Hugo da Costa said that to convinced people that the reform of the judiciary is and PNTL is solid, it needs a credible and knowledgeable figure.

“It is the competence of the president to nominate an attorney general, but he/she should be a credible figure to run the office,” said Mr. Hugo on Friday (24/8) in PNTL’s office, Dili. (STL)

President threats to take out IDPs from camps

The President José Ramos-Horta has threatened to remove the IDPs from Metinaro because of their ongoing provocation that resulted in house burnings on Thursday last week.

Speaking to journalist on Friday (24/8) the President said that he will recommend the F-FDTL secure IDP camps Metinaro.

“if they destroy people’s properties, the state will not recognize them as IDPs,” said President Horta.

He added that he has heard that IDPs in Metinaro kill others’ livestock, loot properties and throw rocks at cars.

“I call on radical members of Fretilin in the Airport, Metinaro, Jardim and Obrigado Barracks to stop the provocation,” said President Horta. (DN)

Adriano: We try and persuade Alfredo and the petitioners to return back to F-FDTL

During the electoral campaign of presidential election, the Democratic Party stated it defended Alfredo Reinado, his followers and the petitioners to return back to F-FDTL, said the PD parliamentary leader Adriano do Nascimento.

He added that PD continues to make efforts to raise the issue of halting the operation against Reinado and his men.

“We raise this issue at the plenary session to support the president’s ideas,” said Mr. Adriano on Friday (24/8) at the parliament, Dili. (DN)

International Media Reports

War pensioners fight for decent housing

Article from: INCLUDEPICTURE Neil Wilson August 27, 2007 12:00am

YOUNG war pensioners are being locked out of decent housing because of booming prices devaluing the real worth of subsidized home loans. Most on benefits because of defence service from East Timor and before are eligible for just $25,000 in discounted loans - an amount not increased since the Vietnam War.

About 800 of those loans were issued last year.

The Peacekeepers and Peacemakers Veterans Association urged the Federal Government to index veterans' subsidized loans to realistic levels, based on today's average home prices.

Service pensioner Steve Coon said as a veteran of the 1990-91 Gulf War he was better off than most, qualifying for a discounted interest loan of $80,000. However that still would consign him to the bottom of the Geelong housing market. Former sailor Mr Coon, 38, and his wife Elsie, said their dream to shift back close to family in Geelong was being jeopardized.

He said war service for Australia had left him on a pension and cost him future earning capacity.

On his totally and Permanently Incapacitated veterans pension of $1600 a fortnight, the most he could afford to borrow was about $200,000.

That included the $80,000 Defence Home Owner Scheme, which cuts 40 per cent from interest rate payments.

Geelong's median price in June was $310,000, with Corio at $190,000. "Then when my uncle returned from Vietnam, his war service loan of $15,000 was enough to buy a three-bedroom, brick home.

"Now that I want to find a respectable home for myself and my wife, my war service loan basically is not enough."

A vastly improved scheme for currently serving defence force personnel was outlined in this year's Budget, offering subsidized-interest loans up to $312,000, depending of length of service. Amounts will be indexed to the national average house price of $390,502.

However this will not be available to veterans out of the forces longer than two years.

Peacekeepers association president Paul Copeland has urged the Federal Government to consider extending the new ADF scheme to younger veterans of East Timor, Iraq and earlier deployments.

He recently put a motion at RSL State Conference, to boost the $25,000 to a level linked to the national average housing price.

"We have younger men suffering disabilities from service, trauma or physical injury, who have been left with no earning capacity," he said.

"When it comes to housing, they are falling into a black hole." Veterans' Affairs Minister Bruce Billson said various schemes had evolved since 1918, with the amount of benefit reflecting the housing market as it was when a veteran served and when they took up the offer.

He pointed out TPI veterans may also be eligible for the first-home buyers grant up to $10,000.

NATIONAL NEWS SOURCES: Timor Post (TP) Radio Timor-Leste (RTL) Suara Timor Lorosae (STL) Diario Tempo (DT) Diario Nacional (DN) Semanario Televisaun Timor-Leste (TVTL)

UNMIT MEDIA MONITORING www.unmit.org 


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