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Indonesian Regime to Prosecute U.S. Journalist

Indonesian Regime to Prosecute U.S. Journalist Allan Nairn

East Timor Action Network (ETAN)

Contact: Amy Goodman, 212-209-2812

Indonesian Regime to Prosecute U.S. Journalist Allan Nairn

Nairn Faces 10-Year Sentence

Benny Mateus, the chief justice of Nusa Tenggara Province province intends to prosecute U.S. journalist Allan Nairn for two technical violations of Indonesian immigration law, a local immigration official in Kupang, West Timor has informed Nairn.

Nairn is to be charged with engaging in unauthorized activities and overstaying his two-month visa. Both acts are considered illegal under sections 50 and 52 of the Indonesian immigration laws. If convicted, Nairn could face 10 years in prison.

Nairn, who was arrested in Dili on September 14, was one of the last journalists reporting from East Timor. Indonesian forces transferred him to Kupang in West Timor, a part of Indonesia.

A local immigration official, Mr. Zurya, has been interrogating Nairn at the immigration facility in downtown Kupang for several days.

According to Indonesian officials in Kupang, while Mateus is seeking to charge Nairn, the Minister of Justice, Dr. Muladi, and the Minister of Information, Yunus Yosfiah, are inclined to deport Nairn.

Kupang is not a safe place. The militia that have been terrorizing East Timor are now rampaging through the refugee camps in West Timor where more than 100,000 East Timorese now reside after being driven from their homes. Hostility to Westerners in Kupang is soaring. It is likely that a U.S. citizen like Nairn will be in great danger if he is not deported immediately.


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