Subject: UNMISET Daily Media Review 12 May 2005

UNMISET Daily Press Review

Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Wednesday, 12 May 2005

Police arrest armed men trying to enter Dili's government headquarters

Police guarding Timor-Leste's government building yesterday arrested three men, one armed with a loaded homemade firearm as they tried to enter the Government Palace, police and military officials said. The officers told Lusa news agency the three men, all members of a dissident former guerilla unit that fought occupying Indonesian forces in the 1990s, were apprehended as they tried to end the government building through a security gate.

Dili's Government Palace was placed under re-enforced guard yesterday, following an Australian diplomatic alert advising its nationals to avoid Timorese government facilities because of a possible terrorist attack.

According to Lusa, the three detainees were all former anti-Indonesian guerrillas who were loyal to Commander Cornelio Gama, popularly known as L7, who has continued to lead a cult-like group that has been very critical of Dili's post-independence authorities.

However, the Timor Post and STL report that PNTL discovered a revolver and seven bullets in the possession of an ex-Falintil solider. The ex-Falintil soldier did not resist arrest and willingly surrendered his bag containing the weapon and bullets to police to be searched. (Lusa, Timor Post, STL)

TL oil and gas talks restart in Sydney

Australia and Timor-Leste yesterday started new talks on how they will share revenue from future multibillion-dollar oil and gas projects in the Timor Sea. The talks aim to finalize a graft pact agreed to last month, which would allow the neighbouring nations to exploit undeveloped petroleum reserves, including Woodside Petroleum's $5-billion Sunrise gas project.

"Both sides are still talking but it is still in the very early stages," a spokesman for Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs said. Earlier this week, Doug Chester, Australia's chief negotiator, said he hopes to put the "finishing touches" on the draft during the talks in Sydney that may run for two or three days.

Under the draft deal, impoverished Timor-Leste would get extra revenue of between AUS$2 billion and AUS$5 billion from the petroleum resources and assistance in developing its fledgling oil industry. In return, Timor-Leste would agree to postpone negotiations on a permanent maritime boundary for 50 to 60 years. (Dow Jones)

UN team on human rights meets with Parliamentary Commission

A visiting United Nations mission evaluating a technical cooperation program between the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Government of Timor-Leste yesterday held a meeting with Commission A of the National Parliament. Following the meeting, the head of the team, Professor Vitit Muntarbhorn, told journalists that in the meeting they had discussed future cooperation between the UN and Timor-Leste. The Head of Commission A, Vicente Aparicio Guterres, added that the UN mission had come to Timor-Leste to evaluate human rights and to evaluate the assistance that the UN has provided to Timor-Leste in the area of human rights. (Timor Post)

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