Subject: AFP: Wiranto: East Timor problem an international one
Date: Sat, 24 Apr 1999 10:34:39 -0400
From: "John M. Miller" <fbp@igc.apc.org>

Received from Joyo:

Wiranto: East Timor problem an international one East Timor problem an international one: Indonesian military chief

JAKARTA, April 21 (AFP) - Indonesian Military Chief General Wiranto on Wednesday said the problem of East Timor was no longer merely a local or national problem, but a matter for the international community.

"The problem of East Timor can no longer be settled in a local way, because it is not only a national problem but also an international one," Wiranto said after a peace pact signing in Dili, the capital of East Timor.

It was the first time that Wiranto has publicly conceded that the problem was not solely an Indonesian concern.

The military chief, along with President B.J. Habibie, has until now ruled out an international peace keeping force in the former Portuguese colony, saying the problem was an internal affair of Indonesia.

Wiranto, interviewed by the SCTV private television, was speaking after witnessing the signing of the agreement between representatives of pro-Indonesia and pro-independence groups and the local military command in East Timor that followed weeks of bloody violence between the two camps.

Indonesia invaded the former Portuguese colony of East Timor in 1975 and annexed it the following year in a move that remains unrecognized by the United Nations.

Indonesia on Wednesday was scheduled to present a final autonomy package in talks with Portugal and the United Nations secretary general in New York. The package will then be offered to the people of East Timor and Jakarta has said that should the package be rejected, it will let East Timor go.

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