etmnlong.gif (2291 bytes) spacer The Suharto Resignation
Statement by the East Timor Action Network
May 20, 1998

The resignation of President Suharto is an important step toward bringing democracy to Indonesia. It is also an important step for East Timor. Real freedom for East Timor is more possible now that the architect of its illegal invasion and occupation has been driven out of office by the Indonesian people.

However, a change of the figurehead at the top, does not necessarily mean a government that respects human rights in Indonesia or East Timor. Nor does it guarantee a reduction or the elimination of the dominant role of the Indonesian military. In fact, the weak presidency of Habibie could be a fig leaf over a military-run government, and democracy is not yet achieved.

We hope that a democratic government in Indonesia will respect the aspirations of the people of East Timor to choose their own government and political status.

The East Timor Action Network believes that no weapons, ammunition, spare parts or military training should be provided to Indonesia so long as there is repression of political freedoms and human rights and until arrangements have been made for a UN-supervised referendum on self-determination in East Timor.

Statement by Constancio Pinto, representative of the East Timorese resistance in the U.S.

I welcome Mr. Suharto's resignation. However, it does not mean that the Indonesian people have achieved democracy in Indonesia. It is still important for the people of Indonesia to continue to demand a free and fair election of their leaders. A democratic government will be the one that observes the rule of law and Democracy and will be open to discuss the future of East-Timor with East Timorese political leaders under the auspices of the United Nations.

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