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Tuesday, May 14, 2002

  • East Timor’s Foreign Minister Discusses Indonesian and International Responsibility for Crimes Against Humanity in East Timor

    Today, women from across the world said that an international tribunal was the only way to hold accountable those responsible for crimes against humanity committed in East Timor during a quarter century of Indonesian occupation, which ended in a bloody scorched earth campaign after the Timorese voted overwhelmingly for independence in 1999.

  • East Timorese Activist Returned Home After Nearly Decade in Exile Discusses Independence and the Challenges Facing a Free East Timor

    Jose Ramos Horta returned to East Timor in December 1999 after a quarter century in exile. At about the same time a younger generation of East Timorese was trickling home as well. Bella Galhos was one of those young people. She spent nearly a decade in exile in Canada after Indonesia had given her a student scholarship to act as a poster girl for the occupation. Once there, she defected and became a leading activist working for East Timor’s independence. She returned to East Timor with Canadian peacekeepers in December 1999 to help rebuild the country Indonesia had just destroyed. In addition to her activism Bella has turned to music to reflect upon East Timor’s struggle and the challenges that lie ahead. She spoke just a block down the road from the Santa Cruz cemetery where Indonesian soldiers gunned down more than 270 Timorese in 1991.

  • East Timorese University Students Talk About Their Hopes for East Timor’s Future

    East Timor’s students have long played a leading role in the struggle for independence. After the fall of Indonesian dictator General Suharto in 1999, University students traveled throughout East Timor holding unprecedented public forums where they demanded a referendum on independence and an end to Indonesia’s occupation. On Monday in the capitol of Dili, a small group of students on the campus of the University of East Timor spoke about their hopes for the future of their country.