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Movimentu Kontra Okupasaun Tasi Timor
Movement Against the Occupation of the Timor Sea
Rua dos Martires da Patria, Bebora, Dili, Timor-Leste
Tel: +670-7734-8703

MKOTT Declaration to the Australian Government

Dili 23 February 2016

ETAN's Pam Sexton speaks at MKOTT rally in Dili, Feb. 23, 2016  
ETAN's Pam Sexton speaks at February 23 rally at the Australian Embassy in Dili., ETAN was founded to oppose the illegal Indonesian occupation. Now, she wanted to stand up in support of Timor's sovereignty and rights as a member of the solidarity movement. There are many from the U.S., Australia and elsewhere who would be there if they could to stand for justice. Photo by Charles Scheiner.  
For more than 40 years, Australia has thirsted over oil and marine resources in the Timor Sea which belong to Timor-Leste according to international law and principles. From the beginning, Australia has justified their desire with a variety of arguments. For example, in 1972 Australia made a treaty with Indonesia to define their seabed border. Australia still uses the outdated 'continental shelf' argument to rationalize their occupation, domination and theft from Timor-Leste's people.

In 1974, Australian oil companies discovered the Greater Sunrise gas field. To make it easier to reap resources from Sunrise and elsewhere in Timor-Leste's territory, Australia supported Indonesia's 1975 invasion of Timor-Leste which killed nearly 200,000 people.

When Timor-Leste won independence from the illegal Indonesian occupation in 1999, Australia still desired the Timorese people's resources, and coerced Timor-Leste to accept some Australian rights to the Elang-Kakatua, Bayu-Undan and Greater Sunrise fields. They also pressured Timor-Leste to surrender its rights to the Laminaria-Corallina and Buffalo oil fields, which are in an area claimed by both countries.

Many Australian people believe that your Government has been generous to our people, but this is a misconception. Since 1999, Australia has provided approximately US$1.7 billion in military and civilian assistance for Timor-Leste through bilateral and multilateral mechanisms. During the same sixteen years, the Australian government has received nearly $5 billion dollars in revenues from oil and gas fields which rightfully belong to Timor-Leste. The more than three billion dollars Timor-Leste has 'given' to Australia makes us your largest aid donor, not the other way around.

Timor-Leste continues to endure injustices from Australia's occupation of the Timor Sea, and therefore the Movement Against the Occupation of the Timor Sea (MKOTT) asks the following of the Australian Government:

1. Australia should respect the sovereignty and dignity of the nation of Timor-Leste, as it does for other nations in the world.

2. Australia should return to the mechanisms for resolving maritime boundary disputes of the International Court of Justice and the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea.

3. The Government of Australia should negotiate with the Government of Timor-Leste in good faith.

4. Australia should not continue to use the 'Continental Shelf' argument which is no longer valid under international law.

5. Australia, as a large nation, should not use its economic and political power in the region to continue to take advantage of the Timorese people's future.

Viva Timor-Leste!

Viva the Maubere People!

Down with Australia's Occupation of the Timor Sea!

Timor Sea demo at Australian Embassy, Feb 22, 2016
A protest calling for the establishment of permanent maritime boundaries along the ‘median line’ half way between Australia and East Timor.took place on February 23 outside the Australian Embassy in Dili. The demonstration was organized by The Movement Against the Occupation of the Timor Sea (Movimentu Kontra Okupasaun Tasi Timor/MKOTT) has been formed by activists, students and former resistance groups. Photo by Juvinal Dias

Movement Against the Occupation of the Timor Sea letter to Australian ambassador (PDF):

Dili, 22 February 2016

His Excellency Peter Doyle, Ambassador of Australia to RDTL
Australian Embassy
Fatuhada, Dili, RDTL

Dear Excellency,

The Movement Against the Occupation of the Timor Sea is a social movement composed of activists, students, individuals, former resistance and civil society organizations. Since its creation in 2004, this moment has advocated for legal, judicial and diplomatic processes between the Australian and Timor-Leste governments to find a maritime boundaries solution which is fair to both countries. MKOTT has carried out several actions, which always reflect principles of democracy and peace, and we do everything we can to prevent situations which could descend into violence.

Therefore, MKOTT is writing this letter to inform your Excellency that we will hold another peaceful action tomorrow (Tuesday 23 February) from 8:30 am until 17:00 pm across the street from the Australian Embassy, following a procession from Palapaso.

This peaceful action will continue our support for Timor-Leste's sovereignty and urge a process to settle the maritime boundary which follows international legal principles. We have attached MKOTT's press release, and we are always ready to discuss these issues with your Excellency or other representatives of the Australian Government.

To ensure that this demonstration proceeds calmly, MKOTT has already informed PNTL and the Interior Ministry about this demonstration, and we continue to work with the relevant authorities to ensure that the action will not have any violence or threats against people or property, and will respect the freedom of expression enshrined in Timor-Leste's Constitution.

If you have questions or concerns, including during the demonstration, please contact Juvinal Dias (+670 7734-8703), Tomas Freitas (+670 7753-9038) or Manuel Monteiro (+670 7852-9491).

We thank you for your attention and collaboration,


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