Subject: E. Timor PM Says Australian Ransacked His Home [2 reports]

also: East Timor police arrest Australian journalist

Agence France Presse

Saturday, May 8, 2004

East Timor PM Says Expelled Australian Ransacked His Home

East Timor Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri said that an Australian activist and freelance journalist ordered expelled from the country a day earlier had participated in the looting of his home in 2002.

He told Portuguese news agency Lusa he had evidence that Julian King had "very openly participated" in deadly rioting in Dili in December 2002 and was the "first person to enter my house".

Two people were killed during the two days of unrest which rocked the East Timorese capital and some 10 buildings were ransacked and burned down, including the home of Alkatiri and houses owned by two of his brothers.

The violence was the worst since Indonesian troops and their militia proxies withdrew in 1999, destroying much of the country as they left.

"He's been abusing our tolerance, he's no journalist and he has his own agenda to subvert state institution," Alkatiri told the agency after talks with East Timor President Xanana Gusmao.

The prime minister added he felt King should have left "long ago".

King, who has lived in East Timor for more than four years, was detained for questioning by police in Dili Thursday and given 48 hours to leave the country because of his alleged meddling in domestic politics.

He has told Australian media he helps veterans of the Falintil independence movement find work with non-governmental organizations in East Timor and provides footage for Australian television stations.

King's expulsion comes at a time of growing tension between East Timor and Australia over negotiations to set a permanent maritime boundary between the two nations which would settle each nation's share of offshore oil and gas reserves.

The half-island territory spent some 450 years as a neglected Portuguese colony before it was invaded by neighbouring Indonesia in 1975 after Lisbon abruptly withdrew.

East Timor officially became independent from Indonesia in May 2002 after its people voted overwhelmingly in a UN-backed referendum in 1999 to break free from Jakarta.


Last Update: Friday, May 7, 2004. 7:16pm (AEST) East Timor police arrest Australian journalist

An Australian activist and freelance journalist working in East Timor has been arrested by police after a raid on his house.

Julian King, 43, is being held at Dili's police headquarters after police searched his home early yesterday morning.

Mr King was apprehended by police on Wednesday night and told he had 48 hours to leave the country.

He was arrested while he was on the way to visit his lawyer.

Mr King says he has not been charged.

"They claim they found a small box of ammunition in my bedroom and that's the reason that they have arrested me," he said.

"However, I found out today that they also took all of my research documents.

"A lot of these documents are classified documents that reveal corruption in the United Nations and members of the Government here in East Timor."

Support ETAN, make a secure financial contribution at

Back to May menu
World Leaders Contact List
Human Rights Violations in East Timor
Main Postings Menu