Tuesday, June 25, 2013

ANTI: We are very sad because you are starting to forget and ignore the history of suffering and the past that is still painful!

Aliansa Nasionál Timor-Leste ba Tribunál Internasionál

We are very sad because you are starting to forget and ignore the history of suffering and the past that is still painful!

ANTI is aware that every act of murder committed against Timorese citizens was done by those who were following instructions of their commander, namely Prabowo.

Today is the third day of the Development Partners Meeting in Timor-Leste. ANTI notes that the agenda for the Development Partners Meeting did not touch on the issue of justice, especially past human rights violations. We consider that the donors have only demonstrated a "half-hearted approach" or have not shown that they are serious about dealing with development issues in a comprehensive manner. 
Therefore gaps/inequalities continue to be created in society.
In accordance with news announced by the Antara News Agency on 10 June 2013 a meeting took place between Prabowo Subianto, Wiranto and Mari Alkatiri in Jakarta, Indonesia. Timorese leaders and the principal perpetrators of human rights violations have already met on numerous occasions since 2004. According to the aforementioned news report Mr. Mari Alkatiri visited the GERINDRA Party to meet with Prabowo and the GERINDRA Party leadership. Prabowo said that this visit was a special visit for Prabowo and his leadership. This news shocked the Timorese community because it reminds us of the atrocities committed by the Indonesian military, especially KOPASSUS, against innocent civilians in Timor-Leste during the occupation by the military regime.

Alkatiri (left) meets with Prabowo (right) 
Alkatiri (left) meets with Prabowo (right) 
We are reminded of the human rights violations committed by Indonesia, especially those committed by KOPASSUS. The CAVR report indicated that there was a sharp increase in sexual violence during the mass arrests that took place between 1978-1983. After 1983 Kopassandha/Kopassus (Indonesian Special Forces) committed more than 100 arrests and incidents of torture in Mauchiga (Hatu Builico, Ainaro) and Kraras, Bibileo, (Viqueque). Prabowo was directly involved in the Craras Massacre in Bibileo. In addition, Prabowo?s men were also involved in the Santa Cruz Massacre (1991).

A number of cases involving sexual violations occurred in military posts or on military bases. In 1976, Prabowo was the platoon commander of the Group 1 Sandhi Yudha Troop Command (Kopassandha) that started to lead operations carried out by the
Nanggala Team in Timor-Leste.

We know for sure that he was involved in human rights violations committed in 1983, and at that time he was a captain.

It is very strange that Prabowo was a commander at that time and that he has not been held accountable for human rights violations that he committed together with his men. ANTI is aware that every act of murder committed against Timorese citizens was done by those who were following instructions of their commander, namely Prabowo.
Based on the CAVR report, approximately 102,800 people died as the result of murder, hunger and disappearances that occurred during the conflict. However, there are several estimates that are much higher than the one mentioned in the CAVR report. In addition, approximately 250,000 people were forced to flee to Indonesia and more than four thousand children were taken by Indonesia and until now their families don't know about their circumstances. More than 800 people were victims of forced disappearances and until now their whereabouts are unknown.

At the end of "Black September" in 1999, the UN Commission for Human Rights held a plenary session to discuss human rights violations in Timor-Leste. This special plenary session was the fourth special session conducted in the history of the Commission. The Commission strongly condemned the planned and systematic "crimes against humanity and violations of international humanitarian law" and called for the perpetrators of these crimes to be prosecuted. The Commission also requested to the UN General Secretary to set up a Commission of Inquiry. Not long after, Kofi Annan set up an International Commission of Inquiry on East Timor (ICIET). ICIET was able to fulfill its mandate by visiting Timor-Leste and Indonesia between November ? December 1999. ICEIT concluded that "a wide range of human rights violations and crimes against humanity and crimes against international humanitarian law had occurred over a long period of time that included intimidation, terror, destruction of property, violence against women and forced removal" At the same time the UN sent three special rapporteurs to Timor-Leste in December 1999. These special human rights envoys recommended for the UN to establish an International Court if the Indonesian government fails to effectively bring the main perpetrators of crimes to justice.

When the ICIET released its report, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Mary Robinson stated that "the report of the Commission of Inquiry has sent a message to the people of Timor-Leste that the international community has not forgotten their suffering. I hope that those that are responsible for the atrocities committed in Timor-Leste are held accountable so that there is no impunity"

However, until now the perpetrators have not yet been held accountable for the human rights violations that they committed. More disappointingly, cases involving serious crimes are starting to be forgotten and ignored. How can the chain of impunity be broken if there is no formal process to try the main perpetrators of human rights violations that occurred in Timor-Leste during the occupation? 

Therefore, ANTI calls for and demands the commitment of the international community to provide accountability for violations that occurred in Timor-Leste during the Indonesian occupation via a fair and credible process.
  1. We request for the international community, including the people of America, England, France, Holland, Norway, Germany, Australia and Latin America, Africa and Asia to be morally responsible in accordance with international humanitarian law. ETAN and Amnesty International in particular need to keep focusing attention and following up on serious crimes cases that occurred in Timor-Leste.
  2. We urge the donors to pay attention to crimes against humanity that occurred in Timor-Leste during the occupation by the Indonesian military to ensure that there is a legitimate process to break the chain of impunity because problems from the past will reflect on the development of democracy now and in the future.
ANTI considers that it is unfair for the international community to once again abandon us, and make that people of Timor-Leste the ones who have to be responsible for demanding accountability for human rights violations that occurred in Timor-Leste.

Dili, 20 June 2013


  1. Asosiasaun HAK
  2. JSMP (Judicial System Monitoring Program)
  3. La'o Hamutuk
  4. Fokupers
  5. Asosiasaun Chega ba Ita (Acbit)
  6. MDI
  7. CDI
  8. Luta Hamutuk
  9. Kadalak Sulimutu Institutu (KSI)
  10. Asososiaun Vitima 74-99
  11. Timor-Leste Student Front
  12. Forum Tau Matan (FTM)
  13. Sek. Fongtil
  14. Haberan Institute
  15. Asean Justice and Rights (AJAR) - Timor-Leste
see also Human Rights & Justice page

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