Subject: Belo on Suharto

BBC Monitoring Asia Pacific January 31, 2008

East Timor bishop says Suharto considered all things "wisely"

Source: Kompas Cyber Media website, Jakarta, in Indonesian 28 Jan 08

Text of report by Indonesian newspaper Kompas Cyber Media website ( ) on 28 January

According to this report, 1996 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and former Apostolic Administrator of the Dili Diocese, Bishop Carlos Filipe Ximenes Belo, said that the people of East Timor would never forget the great service of former Indonesian president Soeharto during the country's period of integration with Indonesia from 1976-1999.

"The people of East Timor will never forget the great service of Pak Harto in all areas of life. We hope, even though Pak Harto has passed away, that the leaders of Indonesia who succeed him possess the same enthusiasm for development as Pak Harto and will continue the cooperation between Indonesia and East Timor in order for both countries to reach peace and prosperity," said Belo in Portugal on 28 January.

"My impression of Pak Harto the man, despite the many problems in East Timor, was that he considered all things wisely. He was the Father of Development, and that is true. I met with him on three occasions," Belo was reported as saying.

"As a man, Pak Harto was a sympathetic figure. As a statesman, he led the Republic of Indonesia with discipline. Perhaps the mistakes made during the time of the New Order regime were the result of rogue elements that did not fully understand the principles of [Indonesia's ideology] the Pancasila. Allow history to prove all of that," Belo said.

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