Subject: DN: Resistance official calls on Xanana Gusmao to act like leader

BBC Monitoring Asia Pacific - Political Supplied by BBC Worldwide Monitoring

East Timor: Resistance official calls on Xanana Gusmao to act like leader

Diario de Noticias' web site, Lisbon, in Portuguese 10 Nov 99

Excerpt from report by Cadi Fernandes entitled: "Xanana should overcome the trauma", published by the Portuguese newspaper Diario de Noticias' web site on 10th November

Without mincing words, Manuel Carrascalao, who feels "somewhat marginalized by the CNRT the National Council of the Timorese Resistance ", unlike his brothers Mario and Joao, who "are on the inside", said: "What is Portugal's problem? Is it or is it not the administering power? What is it waiting for? I have always seen Portugal as a small but brave country. It appears to have weakened. Could it be adopting a sophisticated italics strategy? The truth is that Portugal is wrong in its absence."

One of the more respected Timorese figures, Mario Carrascalao, was willing to reveal all. He regrets that Portugal is literally being overtaken by Australia. "The Portuguese were in Timor for 500 years and Australia has always betrayed us, despite the fact that during the Second World War 84,000 Timorese died at the hands of the Japanese for the crime italics of helping Australia. But as soon as there was the opportunity it betrayed us. It was the first and only country to recognize Timor's integration in Indonesia."

Like a bulldozer he goes on, saying that "it is still too early" to make up italics with Jakarta. "There are still many open wounds." This was his reaction when I asked him to comment on the fact that Xanana Gusmao president of the National Council of the Timorese Resistance wants to go to Indonesia soon to meet the new president.

He also criticizes the CNRT the National Council of the Timorese Resistance and Interfet International Force in East Timor . "The CNRT should be more active. It is very confused with a lack of organization. It should have already formed a government..."

A shadow government? "No way, an actual government, without worrying about what others say. We won the referendum, what are they waiting for? It is because of this lack of organization that there is such a fight for posts now. Things should already have been well defined."

As for Xanana Gusmao, what can you say? "He should be more active. He is seen almost as a God for having saved the territory. I understand that there must he must be traumatized italics because he spent so much time in the mountains and then he was sentenced to life imprisonment, then reduced to 20 years. But I think he must realize that he is the CNRT president, start acting like it and not like a Falintil East Timor National Liberation Armed Forces commander, wearing a military uniform. In the first days it was understandable but now there is no reason for it. He is a civilian, not a professional soldier."

Which regime would be better for Timor? "Initially, presidential, but later parliamentary. Xanana would make a good president. There should also be a good speaker, a known and respected man. Our first government, which should already have been formed, must not favour political parties, it should have people who are influential and honourable in key posts."

As for Interfet, he believes its role has been very useful, but "Australia has had an excessively leading role", he added.

"They freed us from the militias and that was good." But there are limits. Manuel Carrascalao gives a personal example: "Some of my land in Dili is being used by Interfet, without my permission, as rubbish dumps. I have written to the Interfet commander, Gen Peter Cosgrove, to tell him this. That was on 10th October."...


Back to November Menu
World Leaders Contact List
Human Rights Violations in East Timor
Main Postings Menu

Search this site                 powered by FreeFind


If your browser does do not support forms use: Search   Site Map   What's New

Note: For those who would like to fax "the powers that be" - CallCenter V3.5.8, is a Native 32-bit Voice Telephony software application integrated with fax and data communications... and it's free of charge! Download from http://www.v3inc.com/