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NZ Should Help Un Investigate Balibo Murders

New Zealand should help the UN with the investigation into the Balibo murders.


The Indonesia Human Rights Committee welcomes the United Nations announcement from East Timor of enquiry into the 1975 deaths of the five Australian based journalists at Balibo, and calls on the New Zealand Government to co-operate by making available relevant New Zealand documents.

"It is good news indeed that the United Nations police have put resources into getting to the truth about this deeply disturbing crime. These men died when they were trying to get the truth out to the world that Indonesian troops were already active in East Timor. Only two months later Indonesia conducted a full scale air, land and sea invasion," said Maire Leadbeater speaking for the Indonesia Human Rights Committee.

"A New Zealander, Gary Cunningham was among the five killed and some documents which refer to the tragedy have already been released. However, it is probable that New Zealand has additional documents which might help complete the jigsaw of evidence."

"Last week papers were released in Australia which contained the shocking revelation that Australian intelligence and diplomatic sources knew of the planned Indonesian attack on Balibo and did nothing to warn the journalists."

"Over the years a number of witnesses have laid the blame on Indonesian officers many of whom went on to major government positions. Now UN Investigators have been able to find additional evidence and even do a reconstitution of the crime scene."

"This crime will never be forgotten because it led to the betrayal of the East Timorese. We should support the UN in their endeavour to uncover the truth about the guilty parties."

for further information: Maire Leadbeater 09-376-9098 cell 025-436-957


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