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TIMOR TODAY - International Media Summary

TIMOR TODAY 09/09/99

From http://www.easttimor.com - visit the site to view the material listed below. Note: East Timor Today is aligned to the East Timorese independence movement.

PHOTOS

a) Bishop Carlos Belo's home stands burned and destroyed Indonesian troops attacked his refugee-filled compound in Dili, East Timor. Men standing around Belo's home were unidentified. (AP Photo/Jun Kamimura, Kyodo)

b) The strategy behind the bloodbath. Hooded Indonesian police in Dili. (Steve Tickner/Reuters)

c) Indonesian police guard the entrance to the UN compound in the East Timorese capital of Dili. (Steve Tickner/Reuters)

NEWS

1) Fear and looting: life on the mean streets of Dili 09/09/99 (Sydney Morning Herald) The looting never stops. ItÆs brazen now: soldiers, police and militia are stealing whatever they can carry. Dozens of trucks full with televisions, refrigerators and other household goods are parked on the road outside Dili's military headquarters, ready to make the seven-hour dash across East Timor to the Indonesian province of Nusa Tenggara Timur.

2) The strategy behind the bloodbath 09/09/99 (Sydney Morning Herald) In traditional Javanese culture, a cornered man may revert to the practice of "sampyuh". Although his defeat is inevitable, he may lessen his humiliation by taking down as many of his enemies as he can before his own death. As the casualties mount in East Timor this week, the question is just how far the humiliated Indonesian military is prepared to go with its own "sampyuh", and how many innocent civilians will be slaughtered to avenge the vote against Indonesia.

3) Knives out for Indonesian president Habibie 09/09/99 (Sydney Morning Herald) IndonesiaÆs President Habibie yesterday refused to face Australia and other nations, making it plain that an immediate international peacekeeping force would not be tolerated in East Timor.

4) World offers empty threats as army consolidates grip on Indonesia 09/09/99 (TAPOL) The UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan yesterday announced a 48-hour ultimatum to Indonesia to show that martial law which was declared yesterday by President Habibie would lead to an improvement of the security situation in East Timor.

5) Real value of Australia - US alliance under question 09/09/99 (Australian Financial Review) For ultimate reasons of national survival, Canberra has paid the premium on the alliance by contributing to US military operations, by hosting US global intelligence-gathering facilities that have made Australia a potential nuclear target, and by giving unwavering political support to US global policy. Now Canberra is testing how much real value that alliance has for Australia in the face of the grave crisis in East Timor.

6) Face-saving deal promised chaos 09/09/99 (Sydney Morning Herald) It was an imperfect agreement from the outset, but for the United Nations it was a question of serving the greater good. Democracy always comes at a price. But few expected the price to be so horrifically high.

7) Timor tragedy reveals Australia's weakness & impotence. 09/09/99 (Australian Financial Review) The Howard Government appears increasingly impotent in its ability to influence events in Jakarta and East Timor.

PRESS RELEASES

8) Final disgusting act of betrayal 09/09/99 (CNRT) But the fact remains that their departure will signal the total betrayal of my people. The United Nations, Portugal, Indonesia and Australia all promised the people of East Timor could vote on their future and that their decision would be honoured. Encouraged, my people voted. Within an hour of the declaration of the ballot, they were being slaughtered, and such was IndonesiaÆs arrogance on springing the trap, that it was happening before the eyes of horrified TV viewers around the world.

SUMMARY

9) If Indonesia holds on one more week - 09/09/99 (ETISC)

If Indonesia holds on one more week, the international community will lose the war, and East Timor will be destroyed. With General Wiranto gaining power over Habibie in Jakarta, it is almost certain that the Indonesian People's Consultative Council in November will not ratify the overwhelming vote for independence by the people of East Timor.


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