Subject: east timor headlines/11July2001

Bahasa Indonesia Headlines ­ Wednesday 11 July 2001

1. Intimidation and manipulation in refugee camps continue 
2. De Mello wants Jordanian Civpol to be tried in Timor Lorosae 
3. Three days before NC dissolved and members yet to receive official termination letters

1. Intimidation and manipulation in refugee camps continue (Timor Post, front page second lead)

Many refugees in Indonesia-controlled West Timor want to return home to Timor Lorosae but are prevented from doing so by militia groups controlling the refugee camps. These refugees are continuously being intimidated and manipulated to instill fear in them.

This was stated by UNHCR’s Chief of Operations Bernard Kerblat at a press conference in UNTAET yesterday.

Kerblat said the personal safety of those refugees who want to return is being undermined by the militias. This, said Kerblat, has resulted in many refugees being afraid to say to the authorities that they want to return home.

“We feel we have a responsibility to get these refugees, who really want to come back, home to Timor Lorosae despite the intimidation and manipulation carried out by the militias,” said Kerblat.

But the UNHCR official realized the problems humanitarian organizations faced.

“We all know that there are no UN humanitarian officers there ­ UNHCR is not present at the refugee camps,” stressed Kerblat.

“Because of this disadvantage we do not have first hand knowledge of what’s actually happening to the refugees,” added the UNHCR official.

Kerblat voiced his concern over the number of refugees who have returned from the 6 ­ 7 June registration.

“The registration showed 1,250 East Timorese aged over 17 chose to go back home to Timor Lorosae. But till today only a few have returned ­ that’s over a month ago,” he told reporters.

2. De Mello wants Jordanian Civpol to be tried in Timor Lorosae (Suara Timor Lorosae, front page third lead)

The UN Transitional Administrator Sergio Vieira de Mello wants two Jordanian Civpol officers, who have been accused of raping a girl in Kampong Alor in Dili, to be tried at the Dili District Court.

This was stated yesterday by UNTAET spokesperson Barbara Reis at a press conference in UNTAET headquarters.

“Although the two Civpol officers are part of the UN mission, they will be tried according to the laws here if it is proven they committed the alleged crime,” said Barbara quoting Sergio de Mello’s directive.

Barbara said the Civpol officers were alleged to have committed the rape when they were off-duty.

“No one is above the law ­ even international UN staff regardless of what status they are,” she stressed.

3. Three days before NC dissolved and members yet to receive official termination letters (Timor Post, Page 2 lead)

In accordance with the political calendar, the National Council will be dissolved on 15 July to make way for the 30 August election. But with only three days to go before the dissolution members have yet to receive their termination letters.

This was the comment of several NC members who were at National Council proceedings yesterday to debate two regulations.

Problems arose during the debate. Some members felt that the regulations should not be debated and should, instead, be forwarded to the Constituent Assembly ­ to be formed after the 30 August election.

But there were doubts on the actual date of dissolution of the National Council, because the NC President and Secretary had yet to receive the official letter of notification from the Transitional Administrator.

“The Transitional Administrator has told the 16 political parties that the NC will be dissolved on 15 July, so why are we now debating draft regulations three days before the dissolution?” asked NC member Clementino dos Reis Amaral.

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