Subject: Local Media Monitoring - June 6, 2003




1. President Xanana Gusmao said that a prison could be a place of isolation, or it could be also an rehabilitation center that offers opportunities for people to become good citizens. President Gusmao said that he will support this second option where the prison will be a rehabilitation center for prisoners to be more productive. He said this during the open ceremony of the workshop on "Consolidation of the Judicial System" yesterday at Hotel Timor.

2. The World Bank's Vice President for East Asia and Pacific, Mr Jemal-ud-din Kassum said that Development Partners applaud the genuine commitment on the part of Timor-Leste's Government to transform the National Development Plan, written in a such collaborative and consultative manner, into a "living document" that guides the common efforts to reduce poverty, promote economic growth, and improve the lives of the Timorese people. He said that this means the Government recognized the necessity to strengthen peace and stability as basic ingredients for success in future.

3. In response to the question about article 11 of the new Immigration Law and its impact on foreign investment, Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri said that the Government made all efforts to attract investors. The Prime Minister said article 11 of the Immigration Law does not have any link to the investment sector. Mr Alkatiri was speaking during the press conference after the closing ceremony of the Timor-Leste and Development Partners Meeting held yesterday at Hotel Timor.

4. The Chancellor of Dili University, Dr Lucas da Costa, said the decrease in Timor-Leste's economic growth was attributable to the Government intentionally not supporting key sectors in the economiy. Dr Lucas said Timor-Leste has no national banking system, no clear regulation policy, no incentives for "productive sectors", no attractive incentive for foreign direct investments. Dr da Costa was commenting on President Xanana Gusmao's welcome speech at the Timor-Leste Development Partners' Meeting where the President cited the decrease in Timor-Leste's economic growth from 1990 until 2003.


1. In his opening remarks at the workshop on Consolidation of the Judicial System, President Xanana Gusmao said he is very concerned with the judicial system structure in Timor-Leste. He said that it is a fact that there are 32% of the cases pending in the courts that have not had a final decision from the court. The President also pointed out the bad conditions faced by prisoners at Ermera prison.

2. Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri said in the Development Partners' Meeting press conference held yesterday at Hotel Timor that donors had reiterated their continuing support to Timor-Leste. According to Mr Alkatiri the two day meeting was positive. He said the international community had the confidence to support the Government and the Timorese people. He said that the meeting closed without any fund agreement or pledge, but at least the international community reiterated their commitment to assist Timor-Leste. (It was not a pledging meeting).

3. The RDTL Government, the main organs of the judiciary, districts administrators, police officers and representatives from civil society are taking part in a wide ranging consultation on the justice sector that opened yesterday in Dili. The meeting was organized by the Government, with support from UNMISET and UNDP. The meeting was aimed to review the current capacity of the justice sector and to identify immediate and tangible improvements that can be made.

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