Subject: BLOG HUGOG-Lord Downer the diplomat

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Lord Downer the diplomat

SBS correspondent John Martinkus stands out from the herd for his coverage of the East Timor crisis - his recent pieces for NewMatilda and the SMH shed light on the murky background of events that saw last week's removal of PM Marí Alkatiri.

But if this was a very Australian coup, our Foreign Minister, Alexander Downer, hasn't been following the script. In a recent private conversation with East Timor's new Prime Minister, Jose Ramos Horta, Downer told Horta that "the Timorese are little people who needed to grow up..." Downer's haughty comments were relayed to Timor watcher, freelance journalist Sasha Uzunov, who writes:

"There's no real love between Downer and Ramos Horta, despite the media reports about a close working relationship. Downer, according to my sources, read Ramos Horta the riot act and played the part of the bully. The Nobel Peace Prize winner Ramos Horta is cleverly playing the role of submissive in an attempt to manipulate Downer. Not a good start to a close working relationship." posted by Hugo at 5:00 PM

Hugo Kelly

Location:Melbourne, Victoria, Australia I'm a sponge, not a stone. 

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