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TIMOR TODAY 15/10/99

Published: Fri 15 Oct 1999 01:54 PM
TIMOR TODAY 15/10/99
For full text and images see… http://www.easttimor.com/
PHOTOS
a) Indonesia's Foreign Minister Ali Alatas. (AP Photo/Muchtar Zakaria) 15/10/99 (Associated Press)
b) Leader of the Aitarak Militia Eurico Guterres, left, addresses a gathering of about 150 pro- Indonesia supporters near the town of Liquisa in East Timor on Wednesday. (AP Photo/APTN)
NEWS
1) Minister Alatas urges lawmakers to OK Timor independence JAKARTA -Indonesian Foreign Minister Ali Alatas Wednesday urged parliament to approve East Timor’s independence, saying the country could face economic sanctions if the legislators even delay their decision.
2) Indonesian army says it fired first in border clash 15/10/99 (AFP) DILI, East Timor - The head of the multinational force in East Timor, Major General Peter Cosgrove said Thursday that Indonesia had admitted its forces fired the first shots in a border clash last weekend.
3) Militiamen sneak over border to E Timor; vow resistance. 15/10/99 (Associated Press) LIQUICA, Indonesia - Some anti-independence militia groups that fled East Timor are secretly returning with plans to launch a guerrilla campaign against the international peacekeeping force charged with keeping them out.
4) Interfet banned from East Timor skies 15/10/99 (Jakarta Post) UJUNGPANDANG, South Sulawesi - The Air Force operational commander for Eastern Indonesia, Air Rear Marshall Ian Santoso, rejected a request from the International Force for East Timor (Interfet) to fly over East Timor, following the fatal shooting of an Indonesian police officer in Sunday’s mix-up over the East Timor border.
5) Xanana Gusmao to return to East Timor next week 15/10/99 (AFP) CANBERRA - East Timorese independence leader Xanana Gusmao said Thursday he planned to return to his homeland next week for the first time in seven years.
6) Disinformation sows fear in Timor refugees -US official 15/10/99 (Asia Times) WASHINGTON - East Timorese, held by Indonesian-backed militias in West Timor, are receiving disinformation about conditions back home, apparently to discourage them from returning, according to a top US official.
7) East Timor: Hilltop clinic has the right formula 15/10/99 (The Australian) Falintil freedom fighter Benjamin de Jesus was shot about a month ago and the wound, which left a hole drilled in his side, had not healed. The Falintil commandant came out of the hills yesterday to have his wound tended and Corporal Wiseman 23, a medic from Ballarat, was on hand to help.
BRIEFINGS
8) Critics slam Indonesia’s General Wiranto for weakness 15/10/99 (The Asian Wall Street Journal) JAKARTA - Gen. Wiranto is seen by many Indonesians as a relic of the authoritarian past. Many overseas see him as the hand behind the recent upheaval in East Timor. But there is evidence to suggest the truth may be less dramatic, though no less worrying for the country’s future: that he is an armed-forces commander who isn’t always in full control of his troops.
9) UNCHR, OCHA, and USAID Timor Updates 15/10/99 In other developments outside Dili, visits by medical teams to the Suai region have revealed a growing need for medicines and other relief supplies. The opening of the Suai airport in order to airlift aid is a priority, and flights are to follow as soon as the security situation allows.
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Alastair Thompson
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Alastair Thompson is the co-founder of Scoop. He is of Scottish and Irish extraction and from Wellington, New Zealand. Alastair has 24 years experience in the media, at the Dominion, National Business Review, North & South magazine, Straight Furrow newspaper and online since 1997. He is the winner of several journalism awards for business and investigative work.
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