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Timor Today - 22/09/99

TIMOR TODAY 22/09/99



a) East Timorese refugees cheer the arrival of trucks carrying Australian troops and United Nations representitives to a refugee camp in Dare. (AP Photo/David Guttenfelder/POOL)

b) Armed Australian peacekeepers lead alleged militiamen to their barracks following their arrest at the entrance of the Dili airport. (AP Photo/Maya Vidon, Pool)

c) East Timorese refugees cheer Australian soldiers arriving on the HMAS Jervis Bay at the port in Dili. (AP Photo/Dita Alangkara)


1) Peacekeepers overwhelmed by welcome in Dare 22/09/99 (Austtralian Broadcasting Corporation) As we came up the hill, we could hear cheers from a kilometre away, from the actual hill top, and as we approached the street, people flooded out of the forest, they lined the streets, they cheered, they banged the car in happiness and the welcoming for the peacekeepers was quite overwhelming and I think it was overwhelming for them too.

2) Enter the peacekeepers: calm, efficient and two weeks too late 22/09/99 (The Guardian) "We are a highly trained army and the Indonesians understand what we are capable of - and we understand what they are capable of. " But the work of the Indonesian army and the militias is already complete. They donÆt want any trouble. Why bother? East Timor has been sacked, looted and emptied.

3) Timor refugees too scared to return to homes in Dili 22/09/99 (AFP) CANBERRA - Thousands of East Timorese refugees are still too scared to return to the territorial capital Dili despite the arrival of international peacekeepers, Australian defence officials said Tuesday.

4) Shots fired at Australian embassy in Jakarta 22/09/99 (AFP) JAKARTA - "Several shots were fired at the windows of three empty offices last night," said John Milne, the embassyÆs public affairs officer.

5) Habibie urges Indonesia to let East Timor go. 22/09/99 (AFP) JAKARTA - Indonesian President B.J. Habibie on Tuesday urged his people and parliament to accept East TimorÆs vote for independence, saying it was in the countryÆs best interests.

6) Crippled man witnesses wife shot by Kopassus as she prays 22/09/99 (Sydney Morning Herald) He grimaced as he struggled to sit upright. A wide elastic brace encircled his fragile spine, the latter the source of years of agony and, he believes, the cause of his wifeÆs death last weekend near the teeming refugee camp at Dare, on the outskirts of Dili.

7) "Many militiamen kill for only a few rupees" 22/09/99 (Zenit) Sister Paola Bataglini, an Italian missionary, has stayed in the country to help mothers and children. In a telephone interview with the Italian newspaper "Avvenire," she commented on the situation in Dili, where she works with six other Salesian Sisters, in what was formerly a convent and at present has been turned into a shelter.

8) Bishop of Timor mediates between army and guerrillas 22/09/99 (Zenit) BACAU - The Church in Bacau is mediating between the army and the pro-independence guerrillas. At present, Bishop Basilio do Nascimiento, Apostolic Administrator of Bacau, is leading negotiations to free a commando kidnapped on September 7 by the Falintil guerrillas

9) BaliÆs tourist woes as Thais cash in. 22/09/99 (Australian Financial Review) Officials of the Thai tourism industry are denouncing any insensitive attempts to capitalise on Australians turning away from Indonesia - Bali in particular - as a holiday destination because of East Timor.


10) Killing in Oecusse; Intimidation in West Timor 22/09/99 (ETHRC) The East Timor Human Rights Centre (ETHRC) has confirmed the summary execution of approximately 200 East Timorese people in Oecusse on Septeber 8. Seventy of the killings have been confirmed as taking place in three locations in Oecusse - Oesilo, Letive and Pasabe. It has been reported that a large number of the seventy killed were primary and secondary school teachers and government officials.

11) 5 killed yesterday in Baucau by TNI 22/09/99 (ETHRC) The East Timor Human Rights Centre (ETHRC) has just confirmed that Battalion 745 of the TNI has summarily executed 5 East Timorese in Baucau, and seriously wounded a further 3. The violations took place at around 8 am this morning, September 21, as Battalion 745 travelled from Los Palos to Dili.


12) Australian defence force spokesperson on east timor peacekeeping 22/09/99 (Australian Defence Department, Media Advisory) Colonel Duncan Lewis has been appointed as the national spokesperson on East Timor matters at the Australian Defence Force Headquarters. He can be contacted in Canberra on 02 6265 4342 or 02 6265 1708 and after hours on mobile 0416 265 183.


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