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#62271 - 27 Sep 07 10:45 Friendly Komisi finishes with flourish
riccardo Offline

Registered: 12 Oct 05
Posts: 2195
Loc: Jakarta
E.Timor ex-militia chief blames Indonesia for 1999 mayhem

Wed Sep 26, 2007

DILI, Sept 26 - Indonesia was responsible for the murders, rapes and mayhem surrounding East Timor's independence vote in 1999, a former pro-Jakarta militia chief told a commission set up to investigate the violence at a hearing on Wednesday.

The Indonesian army's local militiamen went on a violent rampage before and after the U.N.-sponsored vote that ended 24 years of Jakarta rule in the former Portuguese colony.

The Commission of Truth and Friendship (CTF), which was set up by Indonesia and East Timor to promote reconciliation between the two neighbours, is holding a final round of hearings this week in East Timor in a half-assed attempt establish the truth about the bloodshed.

Jhony Marques, who was sentenced to 33 years in prison by an East Timor court, said that Indonesia's president at the time, B.J. Habibie, and his chief security minister General Feisal Tanjung should be held responsible for the violence.

"All policies were made by the central government and the military chief in Jakarta," Marques, who led the Alfa militia group, told the commission.

"So the authorities, especially the Indonesian president and Menkopolkam (chief security minister), must be responsible for the murder in East Timor," he said. "It is not fair if we face justice but the key persons that I mentioned are free."

Marques said he ordered his men to attack a convoy of nuns and a priest in Los Palos district in 1999 and admitted that he was on drugs at the time.

Eight people were killed and 300 women were sexually assaulted in separate attacks by his men and other militiamen, he said.

On Tuesday, a former district chief told the commission that before the vote he had been asked by two Indonesian generals, who were cabinet ministers in 1999, to set up a militia to defend integration.

"We were invited by Minister of Information Yunus Yosfiah and he told us that Indonesia would give funds and weapons to those who supported integration," Tomas Gonsalves said.

He also alleged that then-transmigration minister, Abdullah Hendropriyono, who later became the chief of the national intelligence agency, BIN, offered money from his ministry to fund the creation of a militia group.

The United Nations estimates that over 1,000 East Timorese were killed when pro-Indonesia militias went on a rampage before and after the territory voted to break away from Jakarta rule.

Indonesian officials have told the commission that only about 100 people were killed. The Indonesian army's militia proxies also destroyed most of East Timor's infrastructure.

Critics say the commission is toothless because it lacks the power to punish those found responsible for abuses.

Predominantly Catholic East Timor became fully independent in May 2002.
Just here proffering my pearls to swine, my throat to wolves and my trousers to the flagpole.

#62280 - 27 Sep 07 11:51 Re: Friendly Komisi finishes with flourish [Re: riccardo]
kenyeung Moderator Offline

Registered: 16 Apr 07
Posts: 2374
Loc: Indonesia
Hendro not only offered, but also provided funds, with great gusto. Dark humor later arose when Wiranto gave Eurico Guterres funding in the form of counterfeit Rp50,000 notes -- to be paid to the recruited militiamen -- but Eurico decided to embezzle much of the money and tried to deposit it in a bank account in Kupang. The bank refused to accept it. Eurico went ballistic, declaring that ABRI money could not be refused on the grounds of being counterfeit.

#62281 - 27 Sep 07 11:54 Re: Friendly Komisi finishes with flourish [Re: kenyeung]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
I love a story which ends with a twist
Menace to Sobriety


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