Subject: AN: Free Eurico, says Amien Rais


from ANTARA, The Indonesian National News Agency Depok, W. Java, May 15 (ANTARA) - Former People's Consultative Assembly (MPR) chairman Amien Rais said for the sake of justice former East Timor pro-integration fighter Eurico Gutteres should be freed from all legal penalties for the human right abuses he was accused of because other parties who were more responsible for the atrocities had been acquitted

"Eurico Guteres was only a field officer who fought in defense of the 'red-and-white' (Indonesia's national flag) in East Timor," Amien said here on Sunday

"If the commander is absolved, then, for the sake of justice, his subordinate should be too," Amien, who is also a former National Mandate Part (PAN) Leader said

He said PAN would give legal assistance to Gutteres through its branch office in East Nusa Tenggara province to defend his rights as a national fighter and have him freed from prison

According to him, Eurico was punished more because there was a struggle within the political elite at the time

He was convinced there would always be a way to get justice done in Gutterres' case

A former deputy Commander of the Integration Fighters Troops (PPI) in East Timor, Eurico Gutterres started to serve a 10-year- prison term on May 4, 2006 at the Cipinang State Penitentiary

Before entering the prison, Gutterres said he respected the decision of the Supreme Court to reject his appeal because he was a good Indonesian citizen although the decision was against his sense of justice

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