Subject: Daily Media Review 23 June 2003


Dili, June 23, 2003 Daily Media Review

Freighter Sinks Northwest of Dili

Eight men are missing feared drowned following the sinking of a cargo ship on its way to Timor-Leste. The ship with 18 crew has foundered in waters just west of the Indonesian Island of Alor, northwest of Dili. The port manager in Dili says seven men managed to swim about five kilometres to shore in Alor. Another three men were rescued and taken to Dili where they are being treated in hospital. A search team including peacekeeping forces and border control authorities has gone to the area to look for the eight missing men. (ABC)

Alkatiri: F-FDTL Should Study Government Expenditure

Interview by STL upon his arrival from London, Prime Minister Alkatiri said that it is important for the National Security Institution to analyze and understand the budget and expenditure (RAPBN) the government had prepared to the Defence Force. Alkatiri was referring to comment made last week by F-FDTL Chief of Staff Colonel Anan Timor who said that the government had not given priorities in addressing former Falintil members' problems. Alkatiri said that the condition of former combatants has not been put aside by the government. He added that F-FDTL must know where the government's budget comes from and how it is spent on the rebuilding of the country. Regarding Lere's comment on employment opportunities, the Prime Minister said that that it was not only the government responsibilities but the private sector as well. But he said that unfortunately Timor-Leste had not created conditions for private investment due to the lack of investment law. But the government was working on this legislation in order to regulate foreign investment operating in the country. (STL)

Alkatiri Promises That Population Will Not Go Hungry

Prime Minister Alkatiri told the media that the population in Suai, Ainaro, Same and Viqueque, will not go hungry and assistance would be delivered to those in need as soon as possible. He said the Minister of Interior, Rogério Lobato had already visited the areas and the government is looking into the best solution to provide assistance. Alkatiri added that he will appeal to the international community for humanitarian assistance to those areas affected by the flood. He added that the government and UNMISET was meeting on Monday (23/6) regarding this matter while the Minister of Transport and Public Works Ovidio de Jesus Amaral was meeting with the Japanese Engineering Group (JEG) on the best solution to repair collapsed roads. (TP)

Horta and Albright Campaign for Peace in Burma

Foreign Minister José Ramos Horta together with former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, Nobel Laureates Oscar Arias Sanchez, from Costa Rica, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, from South Africa and Rigoberta Menchu from Guatemala, will launch an international democracy and peace campaign for Burma in Oslo, Norway. (STL)

Timor-Leste Seeks Macao's Help in Tourist Development

Timor Leste's Foreign Minister José Ramos-Horta on Sunday expressed the hope for Macao to get involved in the development of tourism in Timor-Leste. In the meeting with Joao Manuel Antunes, director of the Macao Tourist Office, Horta said that the Timorese government intended to set up a representative office in Macao to substantiate the cooperation and help create more opportunities for the endeavor. Horta said that the tourism development in Timor-Leste that has just got off the mark could borrow many experiences from Macao through cooperation. Horta arrived in Macao on Friday for a five-day visit. During his stay, he will meet with Edmund Ho Hau Wah, chief executive of Macao, and officials in the general secretariats of administration and justice, and social affairs and culture. It is reported that a name has been presented to China central government for a honorary consul in Macau. The name was not revealed but Horta said it is a "Chinese business man who has been living in Macau for more than 20 year, who had visited the country several times and knows Timor-Leste very well. The Timorese Minister also said that the opening of a Timor-Leste embassy in China is under discussion.(XinhuaNet, Lusa)

President Gusmão: Martial Arts Groups Should be Punished if Conflicts Continue

President Gusmão has warned all martial groups that, "if they continue fighting and contribute to the instability and security of the country, then those responsible should be punished". The President told the media on Friday that Martial Arts groups involved in Colmera conflict have not kept their promises as agreed during a congress held in Balide last year. He added that the head of the groups have not shown moral responsibilities to their members. Today [Monday] UNPOL and PNTL held a press conference on new clashes involving various martial arts groups in the last two weeks. As a consequence of the clashes, 10 people, mostly from martial arts groups were detained. Five people were hurt, two of them badly injured during the clashes. The police are dealing with these questions and they intend to propose a memorandum of understanding, which will be signed by the groups and the police. (STL)

EU Leaders Ready to Support Refugees

On Friday European Union leaders approved measures aimed at assisting refugees from East Timor who are still living in Indonesia. The final declaration of the EU leaders`summit which took taking place in Porto Carras (Greece) said the bloc's 15 members will cooperate with the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, in assisting the Jakarta government rehouse Timorese refugees who want to remain in West Timor. The EU leaders said they are "closely following" the situation of East Timorese refugees still living in camps in the Indonesian half of Timor island. European chiefs of government also reiterated their backing to the support and consolidation of democracy in Timor. (Lusa)

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