Subject: AI UA 88/99 EAST TIMOR Fear for safety/disappearance
Date: 23 Apr 99 18:48:14 -0400
From: UA E-Mail Incoming <UA%AI-UK@amnesty.org.uk>

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PUBLIC AI Index: ASA 21/33/99

23 April 1999

UA 88/99 Fear for safety/"Disappearance"

EAST TIMOR

Mateus Araujo Alvaro Daniel Marcelino Jorge Bernadino Felis Marcal Abilio Alvaro

Amnesty International is seriously concerned for the safety of a group of at least 10 people, including those named above, who "disappeared" after they were abducted by paramilitaries in the town of Suai, about 100 kilometres south of the capital, Dili. The organisation is concerned for the safety of all supporters of East Timorese independence in the area.

The 10 names appear on a list of people captured by the paramilitary group Laksaur Merah Putih in an operation that began on 19 April 1999. Two were kidnapped from their homes, six as they were catching a plane to Dili and two others as they were driving around. `Abilio' is believed to be Abilio Pires, known to have been captured and killed by the paramilitaries.

According to reports, there are still hundreds of Laksaur Merah Putih paramilitaries on the streets of Suai. The paramilitaries are reported to be threatening to kill supporters of independence in the town.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

Paramilitary groups have carried out attacks in several towns in East Timor, including Liquisa where they killed at least 18 and possibly many more East Timorese on 6 April. Seven more people have reportedly been killed in Liquisa since then.

Since 17 April at least 13 people and possibly many more are believed to have been killed in Dili by a paramilitary force of over 1000 that arrived in the town the day before. The situation in Dili remains tense and paramilitary units are still visible on the streets. Supporters of independence and human rights monitors, many of whom have gone into hiding, are still at risk of arrest or violent attacks.

The Indonesian authorities say they have arrested 15 members of paramilitary units for their involvement in attacks since 17 April.

FURTHER RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express/ airmail letters in Bahasa Indonesia or English or in your own language:

- expressing grave concern at the reported "disappearance" of at least 10 people captured by paramilitaries in Suai and urging the authorities to immediately take action to find and disclose their whereabouts;

- urging the authorities to launch a full investigation into death of Abilio Pires;

- urging the authorities to take immediate measures to ensure the safety of all supporters of independence in Suai and elsewhere in East Timor;

- urging the authorities to disarm and disband all paramilitary units.

APPEALS TO: (Time difference = GMT + 7 hrs / BST + 6 hrs)

MINISTER OF DEFENSE AND SECURITY

Gen. Wiranto [Salutation: Dear Minister] Menteri Pertahanan dan Keamanan Jl. Medan Merdeka Barat No.13-14 Jakarta 10110 Indonesia Fax: + 62 21 381 4535/62 21 384 5178

PRESIDENT President Jusuf Habibie [Salutation: Dear President] Presiden RI Istana Negara Jl. Veteran Jakarta Pusat Indonesia Fax: + 62 21 526 8726/ 380 5511/ 62 21 345 7782 (via Ministry of Foreign Affairs) Telex: 44283 BIGRA IA; 44469 DEPLU IA Telegram: President Habibie, Jakarta, Indonesia

PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Please do not send appeals after 4 June 1999.


If you have any queries about this Urgent Action or about + + the UA scheme in general, please contact: + + Ray Mitchell / Becky Hess + + Amnesty International UK Section + + 99 - 119 Rosebery Avenue + + London EC1R 4RE email: ua@amnesty.org.uk

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