quinta-feira, agosto 17, 2006

East Timor elections 'legitimate'

The Daily Telegraph
From correspondents in Dili

August 16, 2006 12:00

Article from: Agence France-Presse

EAST Timor's top court has rejected a legal challenge to the ruling Fretilin party over a leadership election which President Xanana Gusmao had alleged was illegitimate, officials said today.

Fretilin said in a statement that the court ruled last Friday that the challenge had been made too late and would have been dismissed anyway.

The case related to Fretilin's annual congress in May, when a leadership vote was taken by a show of hands rather than by secret ballot.

The court said that the nation's law on political parties did not require leadership votes to be held in secret, according to the ruling party's statement.

Filomeno Aleixo, the party's spokesman, said the decision ended a challenge by "eight party members who, among other arguments, pushed for another congress to elect a new leadership."

East Timor's then premier Mari Alkatiri was elected to continue as Fretilin's secretary-general in May's party leadership vote.

But the tiny state descended into violence shortly after the congress, triggered by Mr Alkatiri's sacking of about 600 soldiers.

Some 21 people were killed amid factional fighting and 3000 foreign peacekeepers were dispatched to restore calm.

Mr Gusmao pressured Mr Alkatiri to step down, alleging among other things that Mr Alkatiri's election had been illegitimate. In June the president ordered the ruling party to choose a new prime minister.

Mr Alkatiri eventually stepped down and was replaced by Nobel peace laureate Jose Ramos-Horta, a political independent who won Fretilin's backing.

.

26 comentários:

Anónimo disse...

Tradução:

Timor-Leste: eleições 'legítimas'
The Daily Telegraph
De: correspondentes em Dili

Agosto 16, 2006 12:00

Artigo da: Agence France-Presse

O tribunal de topo de Timor-Leste rejeitou um desafio legal para o partido no poder a Fretilin sobre a eleição para a liderança que o Presidente Xanana Gusmão tinha alegado ser ilegal, disseram oficiais hoje.

A Fretilin disse numa declaração que o Tribunal decidiu na passada Sexta-feira que o desafio tinha sido feito tarde de mais e seria descartado de qualquer modo.

O caso está relacionado com o congresso anual da Fretilin em Maio, quando um voto para a liderança se fez de braço no ar em vez de ser por voto secreto.

O tribunal disse que a lei da nação sobre partidos políticos não requer que os votos para a liderança sejam secretos, de acordo com a declaração do partido no poder.

Filomeno Aleixo, o porta-voz do partido, disse que a decisão acabou um desafio por "oito membros que, entre outros argumentos, empurraram para um novo congresso para eleger uma nova liderança."

O então primeiro-ministro de Timor-Leste Mari Alkatiri foi eleito para continuar como Secretário-geral da Fretilin.

Mas o pequeno Estado desceu em violência pouco depois do congresso, desencadeado pelo despedimento de cerca de 600 soldados pelo Sr Alkatir.

Algumas 21 pessoas foram mortas no meio de lutas fraccionais e 3000 tropas estrangeiras foram despachadas para restaurar a calma.

O Sr Gusmão pressionou o Sr Alkatiri para sair, alegando entre outras coisas que a eleição do Sr Alkatiri tinha sido ilegítima. Em Junho o presidente ordenou ao partido no poder para escolher um novo primeiro-ministro.

O Sr Alkatiri saiu eventualmente e foi substituído pelo laureado do Nobel da paz José Ramos-Horta, um independente político que ganhou o apoio da Fretilin.

Anónimo disse...

Mr. Xanana gave pressure to Camarada Mari in order to resign because he at that time he (xanana)did not realize that his understanding on LAW is very poor.

Anónimo disse...

Very embarrassing a President of Republic made such allegation in a state address and reported all over the world.
This irrational behave has not only affected his credibility but also the country prestige. He should leave his office after the Court decided that the election of Fretilin leaders was legitimate to show his responsibility over the destruction he has created for the country.

The other aspect of his failure is on the security situation. He controlled all the forces. It was astonishing to note when an Australian forces who tried to calm down a fight in the colmera area was accused by some of the refugees of not trying to stop the attackers. The army said your President does not allow us to arrest those people. Incredible!!!
Let’s hope God to punish this guy over the trouble he created.

Timor2 disse...

His behaviour was appalling during the crisis. This mistake was part of the June 22 speech, a speech which was inflammatory and lacked credibility. President himself has lost credibility of his appalling behaviour and various irrational decisions, remember the video tape resignation request and his participation in protests alongside dubious characters (Tara and Rai Los) in order to force the resignation of the Prime Minister Alkatiri. What a joke.

Anónimo disse...

Seorang dictator menyedihkan...
Kasihan Timor-Leste memiliki seorang President jahat seperti itu.

Timor2 disse...

Itu kelihatannnya baik, saya tidak mempercayai Presiden.

Anónimo disse...

Agora Mari Alkatiri devia mandar a Xanana um CD com o acórdão do Tribunal de Recurso...

Anónimo disse...

Mari had to step down to take responsibility for his mismanagement of the issues that sparked the crisis.
There are still the allegations of arming civilian groups that have not been settled yet.

These reasons alone were more than enough for him to at least step aside which he refused to do. There was no other option other than to pressure him to resign as the President correctly did.

All the other issues mentioned for his removal were secondary as was the legality of his party leadership which had nothing to bear on the crisis itself.

Anónimo disse...

In response to 18:50pm

"There are still the allegations of arming civilian groups that have not been settled yet."

Alkatiri has not been charged with any crime. They are just allegations- everyone knew that was the case. A simple look at the composition of Railos' group will tell you that they were highly dubious claims.

Also, I think the point is that Xanana is equally responsible for the crisis as any other leader. The guy is an absolutely incompetent President who has mismanaged the situation. The same applies to JRH. The decision to sack the soldiers was a decision supported by most of the leaders (JRH and XG included).

Anónimo disse...

Xanana ACCEPTED the decision but DID NOT agree with it.
Let's not mix things up.
There is a fundamental difference between "accepting" and "supporting". Check it out in a dicctionary.

As for the Railos allegations it included claims that Mari met them on May 8 where he allegedly gave them the instructions. That meeting was corroborated by Mari himself although he denies issuing such instructions. At least Railos seems to be truthful on that.

We also know the weapons in his possession do belong to PNTL and that Rogerio was involved, in one way or another, with Railos and his group. Rogerio confirmed that Railos group had been recruited as "scouts" for the PNTL. So there are a lot of issues which still requires further clarification.

Lets wait and see how much truth there was in Railos' allegations and that is why I said that those issues "have not been settled yet". It will only be settled when the Prosecutor General's office definitively decides not to press charges. Then and only then will the case be rested.

Anónimo disse...

Entrevista Expresso - Ana Pessoa
24.06.2006

(…)
Ana Pessoa - O recrutamento da Policia Nacional de Timor-Leste (PNTL) foi inteiramente feito pela UNTAET. Incorporaram mais de 100 agentes e oficiais indonésios, alguns dos quais tinham uma folha de serviços muito má, referenciados como torcionários. Foi o que provocou a primeira divisão entre os chamados «nacionalistas» e o grupo dos «autonomistas», ex-agentes da polícia indonésia que foram incorporados na PNTL em nome da reconciliação nacional. Costumava dizer que a policia foi estruturada para se desestruturar na altura da primeira crise. Foi o que aconteceu.

A criação de forças especiais também criou mal-estar e aparece agora relacionada com grupos paramilitares de autodefesa.

Em Janeiro de 2003, milicianos infiltrados através da fronteira com Timor Ocidental atacaram aldeias, mataram populações indefesas, na região de Atsabe. A nossa polícia, que só tinha uns 15 homens na zona armados com pistolas, não foi capaz de reagir. Fizemos intervir os militares das Forças de Defesa e Segurança (FDSTL) e fomos acusados de violações dos direitos humanos.

Foi nesta altura que se decidiu criar a Reserva Especial da polícia, para actuar fora das zonas urbanas, segundo o modelo da «Jungle Police» da Malásia. Os seus membros foram recrutados no seio da PNTL, deviam ter pelo menos seis meses de serviço e nenhum antecedente disciplinar. Receberam um treino mais puxado, tipo rangers, equipamentos adequados e armas automáticas.

Expresso - Como aparecem armas nas mãos de civis?

Ana Pessoa - Há armas nas mãos de civis porque o comando da polícia falhou. Os paióis foram roubados, há armas em circulação na posse de pessoas que não sabemos ao certo se são civis ou polícias que despiram as fardas. Não creio que entrou clandestinamente mais armamento em Timor. Há muitas especulações que são aproveitadas, sobretudo pelos australianos, para provar que há descontrolo por parte do governo. Está a fazer-se o levantamento das armas existentes e das que faltam ao inventário. As FDSTL fizeram-no imediatamente, porque estava tudo bem organizado. Na policia não.

Expresso - As FDSTL não têm problemas?

Ana Pessoa - Têm um comando e quando há comando há disciplina, felizmente.

Expresso - Quem são os grupos armados que o Rogério Lobato admitiu ter autorizado?

Ana Pessoa - Não sei. Só tenho uma certeza: não são da Fretilin. Como disse o Lu-Olo (presidente da Fretilin e do Parlamento), a Fretilin não tem milícias armadas, não é nem nunca foi um partido terrorista como uma certa imprensa quer fazer crer. Também não conheço o Railos, mas recebi uma mensagem dele, no meu telemóvel, a 12 de Junho. No SMS que recebi por engano (era dirigido a Lu-Olo) Railos autoproclamava-se chefe do «Grupo de Salvaguarda Povo e Nação» e dizia, em tétum, que sabia que a Fretilin não distribuiu armas, mas que quem o fez foi Alkatiri. Julgo que estão a tentar dividir a Fretilin para fazer cair o Governo.

(…)

Anónimo disse...

Isso sao tretas da Ana Pessoa pa! O governo de Mari Alkatiri continuou a recrutar novos policias durante os quatro anos do governacao e a Policia de Reserva foi criado por esse mesmo governo.
O que dizem ou deixam de dizer em entrevistas nao sao necessariamente verdades porque senao o Tribunal de Recurso nao e competente, profissional nem independente como ela e o Sr Mari berraram tambem em entrevista.

Anónimo disse...

In response to 11:37:45 PM

You wrote: "There is a fundamental difference between "accepting" and "supporting". Check it out in a dicctionary."

Fair enought point on "accepting" and "supporting" not being the same thing, but how someone can accept a decision and not agree with it is a bit puzzling to me. That statement is as contradictory as any statement that Xanana has made. You would make him proud- maybe you should join his team of advisers, you would certainly fit in.

As for the allegations- I agree lets wait for the end of the case on Lobato, but as I said, they are highly dubious allegations and no charges have been made against Alkatiri to date. If I am proven wrong, then fine, Alkatiri should be tried and sent to jail (if guilty).

Timor2 disse...

Xanana accepting the decision is an endorsement of the decision. As the President and the Supreme Commander of the Armed forces by accepting the decision he too accepts any responsibilities that may result for that decision. If the President was true to his conscience and principles he would of continued to disagree with the decision.

The arming of the alleged hit squad remains an allegation that has not been substantiated. The Presidents credibility over this the handling of this crisis is in doubt as he was in incorrect in his assertion that the leadership of FRETILIN was illegitimate because of the election process used by FRETILIN. This is highly relevant because it was an argument he used in his public speech of 22 June that was an over riding factor in Mari’s resignation. There was for the video tape debacle (Four Corners report), his presence amongst Railos and Tara (two highly dubious characters) in public demonstrations against Mari, his continual contacts with Alfredo and the Petitioners before the attacks on Dili that triggered wide scale violence in Dili. There was also his inflammatory speeches, which divided the country into East and West. I agree he is an incompetent President.

Anónimo disse...

Timor2:

Funny how some people will always try to argue something beyond that which is reasonable.
The fact that one accepts something and still does not agreed with it is most often an indication that that something is beyond one's control.

The sacking of the soldiers was an administrative issue over which the PR had no control. That issue was in the realm of the government's jurisdiction. So that even though President Xanana did not agree with it he had no other choice but to accept it.

Is this so difficult to understand? As for credibility or the lack of it lets leave it to the scrutiny of the people in the next elections.

As for the allegations against Mari Alkatiri let's leave it to the justice system to deal with it. The day when the Office of the PG decides to close the case then Mari will be clear of it.
Until then it is not over. Mari Alkatiri has not been detained and therefore the PG office does not have charge him right away.
The process is ongoing and I suspect the PG's Office will not make a move (whatever it is) until the International Investigation Cmission releases its findings. I could be wrong but until then let's just wait and see.

Timor2 disse...
Este comentário foi removido por um gestor do blogue.
Timor2 disse...

I think what we need to be is not reasonable but rational. Like I said the President has endorsed an administrative decision and is also responsible for the ramifications of such a decision, he is also morally bound by accepting the decision. If it is a decision which he believes was a fundamental flaw he has every right not to accept that decision, he was not coerced into making a decision he does not agree with, hence I dont agree with you that he had no choice over the matter. The President had a moral obligation to act impartially during the crisis, he did not and hence it was a catalyst for the crisis.

I also believe that the Presidents handling of the crisis deserves to be scrutinised not at the elections but as part of any investigation into the recent crisis. As pointed out the President made some controversial decisions especially with his inflammatory speeches one which resulted in the burning of Taibessi market and inciting East West divisions.

I think it is difficult for some people to accept that the President is also prone to mistakes and that he may have made poor judgement (it is my opinion that he is as President incompetent)during the crisis and thus in a different context I agree with you profoundly that “funny how some people will always try to argue something beyond that which is reasonable”.

On a lighter note, I agree with your point that the allegations against Mari is best left for the Justice System to resolve. However I do maintain my opinion that there is no concrete evidence so far that Mari was involved in the armament of a “hit squad”. This is evident in the fact that the PR has not imposed any severe restrictions or has proceeded with to prosecution. It may be that the PR is waiting on the international investigating commission to release its finding. Again I agree with your point “let’s just wait and see”.

Anónimo disse...

In response to 1:06:31 PM:

"The sacking of the soldiers was an administrative issue over which the PR had no control."

The President accepted the decision. If he did not agree with the decision, he should have made it clear at the time and should not have accepted it. Instead, he disagreed and accepted it??????? I find that difficult to understand- in fact I find the President's behaviour throughout the whole crisis difficult to understand. He has been ambiguous throughout the whole thing.

I mean seriously- is it that difficult to see that his actions made the situation much worse that what it was. The PR is not above any criticism.

Of course the government has to take its responsibility for the crisis, which it has with the resignations of Alkatiri, Lobato and Rodrigues plus the formation of a new government. The President is incompetent and has been part of the problem all along (perhaps he might be THE problem- who knows at this stage).

Timor2 disse...

Sexta-feira, Agosto 18, 2006 2:14:32 PM "This is evident in the fact that the PR has not imposed any severe restrictions or has proceeded with to prosecution. It may be that the PR is waiting on the international investigating commission to release its finding."

Sorry lapse of concentration it read PG not PR.

By the way I agree wholeheartedly with you Anonymous Sexta-feira, Agosto 18, 2006 2:23:36 PM,.

Its good to be rational and above all "free" to question....The President is incompetent and has been part of the problem all along (perhaps he might be THE problem- who knows at this stage).

Anónimo disse...

Timor2 said:

"Like I said the President has endorsed an administrative decision and is also responsible for the ramifications of such a decision, he is also morally bound by accepting the decision. If it is a decision which he believes was a fundamental flaw he has every right not to accept that decision, he was not coerced into making a decision he does not agree with, hence I dont agree with you that he had no choice over the matter."

Endorsement equates to supporting, approving of. Regarding the sacking of the soldiers the PR could not do anything other than acknowledge it. There are not administrative procedures that estipulate the need for his endorsement, approval or dissaproval for that matter.

You said "he was not coerced into making a decision he does not agree with". Of course NOT. HE DID NOT MAKE ANY DECISION NOR WAS HE REQUIRED TO DO SO. The decision was not his to make. It was always of the exclusive competence of the government. The only thing the PR could have done was provide his OPINION to the relevant intitutions with the responsibility to deal with the issue.

His ACCEPTANCE of the decision just means that he recognised the government's legal authority over the matter. There would be no difference, for all legal purposes, if he said he did not accept the decision because he could not change it. Nevertheless he could and did voice his opinion saying he did not agree with it.


Anonymous 2:23:36 PM said: "The President accepted the decision. If he did not agree with the decision, he should have made it clear at the time and should not have accepted it. Instead, he disagreed and accepted it??????? I find that difficult to understand-"

Again the PR made it clear he did not agree with the decision at the time, but he accepted it because the decision was not his to make. Lets look at this example:

The Fretilin faction called "mudanca" does not agreed with the Court of Appeals decision that the vote by a show of hands was not illegal and that therefore mari's leadership is legal. Even though they don't agree with the decision, they nevertheless have said to accept it because they cannot change that decision.

Do you understand? If you don't understand that my friend there is nothing I can do for you.

Anónimo disse...

2:39:04 AM: Já aqui "provei" que quem berrou que os outros (a Ana e o Mari) berraram foi o JSMP e eles aos costumes nada disseram. Portanto o melhor é acabar com mais essa novela.

Anónimo disse...

In response to Sexta-feira, Agosto 18, 2006 5:51:00 PM

"The only thing the PR could have done was to provide his OPINION to the relevant intitutions with the responsibility to deal with the issue."

The PR's position was ambiguous, simple as that. I think what you need to understand is your inability to criticise his actions. As I said, if he didn't agree with the decion he should not have accepted it, and this more so because the "rebels" saw him as their commander. Do I need to point to you the amount of times where Reinado, Tara and Salsinha and co said that?

His position and the respect that he has in society meant that he had to be firm in adopting one position or another. He is an absolutely incomptetent president.

And as for him not intervening with government affairs, how do you explain the following:

1. His decision that Fretilin was illegitmate: A judicial function, not a decision within his competency. The Court of Appeal has ruled on this issue.
2. His demand that Alkatiri resign on the basis of view evidence. He can't demand the forced resisgnation of a PM.
3. His effective choice of JRH as PM. Three options were open to him to chose a PM, but he has no constitutional authority to do so. Admittedly in this case, realpolitk prevailed, but only because of the behaviour of "Mr big boss" Xanana Gusmao. This is hard to prove, but it was well known that XG would have not accepted anyone else- so the ruling party was forced to nominate JRH.

In light of the three examples above (and there are probably more) your argument that "His ACCEPTANCE of the decision just means that he recognised the government's legal authority over the matter." doesn't stack up. The President has hardly any understanding of how a government is run or the functioning of the seperate arms of government. This has been shown by the fact that he has continously acted beyond the powers bestowed to him under the Constitution.

Understand that!

Anónimo disse...

Apologies: "view evidence" is meant to be "video evidence" in point 2 above"

Anónimo disse...

12:44:33 PM anonymous,

If you understand so much about the functioning of government and the principle of separation of powers then answer me just one question.

You keep insisting that "...if he didn't agree with the decion he should not have accepted it, and this more so because the "rebels" saw him as their commander."

OK. Let's say he did not accept it as you suggested. Then what? What could possibly result from him not accepting that decision?

If you can answer this question adequately I will concede that you are right or else just stop insisting on it.

As for he "video evidence" as the basis for the resignation demand you must not really believe in that, do you?
Most people would have come to the conclusion that the crisis lived at the time would have been the real basis to warrant Alkatiri's dismissal. In any other democratic country, the people would be looking at their PM asking for political responsibility if their lives had descended into total caos as it did in Dili.

No PM in a democratic country would have survived such a serious crisis that ultimately saw the country depending on foreign troops to ensure security. No doubt the PM would have been gone.

Anyway if you can answer my previous question I would be much obliged.

Anónimo disse...

In response to 5:52:12 PM

Your answer: As I said, the fact that Xanana accepted and disagreed with the decision is contradictory and ambiguous. It is another example of our President's ambiguous/contradictory approach to the crisis. It showed that the President was incapable of taking a clear stance on issues- ie a sign of weakness.

As the President was perceived to be weak or unable to take a clear stance, the rebels would have gained confidence that they could escalate their demands from having their grievances answered to demanding a change of government/resignation of a PM, which I think you would agree, they have no right to do so. The change in demands occurred before Reinado allegedly attacked the FFDTL soldiers and before foreign soldiers were called in. In my view, it got to that stage partly (there are other factors) because the President was ambiguous and weak.

At no stage did the President ever say "you can't make those demands. Demand that your grievances be met, but not for a change in governnment". When you have what is an armed coup taking place you need a very strong figure to help guide the country. The President, unfortunately, was everything but that and thats why I am bringing up his contradictory nature.

You are right, in the sense that the President could not have done anything about the decision ie he had no power to reverse it. I'll concede that point. However, the President's stance matters as he has moral authority. The fact that he was ambiguous is a sign of weakness and, as I said, would have emboldened the rebels to escalate their demands.

Don't get me wrong, Xanana is a resistance hero, and I love him for that. However, he is too soft to be the President of a young democracy.

As for Alkatiri, I already said that he has taken his responsibility by resigning (look at what I wrote at 2:23:36 PM). However, he is not the only person responsible for the crisis. Your inability to look at our President and realise that he flaws and has made major mistakes is frankly quite startling.

Also, as to your comment "As for he "video evidence" as the basis for the resignation demand you must not really believe in that, do you?"- maybe the Governor General in Australia should hand a video to Howard/Downer about the AWB scandal and ask for their resignation? It was simply another example of incompetence from the President.

Anónimo disse...

8:52:33 PM anonymous,

I take it that your real answer and the closest anyway to my question is contained in your following statment:

"You are right, in the sense that the President could not have done anything about the decision ie he had no power to reverse it. I'll concede that point."

That is the reason why he accepted it. But he did not agree with it and he made very clear the reasons for his disagreement. He correctly argued that the petitioners issue should have been dealt with much more sensitivity and should not have been reduced to a disciplinary issue.
First because it was a very substancial number of soldiers involved.
Second because they all came from the West.

Thus, any disciplinary action that resulted in a mass sacking as it happened, although legally correct, it would always have been perceived by those people as further discrimination against the loromonu.
Although this was never the intention of the government that is exactly how they perceived it.

As such his stance was not ambiguos at all. Now, that by him disagreeing with it the petitioners may have felt vindicated in some way is very possible. Inversely, do you think that if he had publicly agreed with the decision (when infact he didn't) would have resulted in the petitioners dropping their claims and going home? Not only do I have serious doubts about that, but I could bet they would not.

On the other hand, if the president had not accepted the decision as you previously suggested ("As I said, if he didn't agree with the decion he should not have accepted it...") not only it would not reverse the decision but it would definitely boost the petitioner's confidence beyond him disagreeing but ACCEPTING the decision. Don't you think?

Now for the change of demands we must look at it in a fair way. The call for the PM's resignation came after the incident on April 28-29 at Tasitolo. Previous to that the petitioners were demanding that their grievances regarding discrimination be adressed. After the military intervention in Tasitolo they changed the demands to call the PM to stand down.
From their perspective, the government had proved its willingness to use military force do supress them so its is only logical that they would have changed their demands. Surely, others including political elements sought to take advantage of this unrest and score some political goals in their favour and there is no denying that.
However they would not have had that oportunity had the petitioner's case been resolved in a timely and more sensitivy manner.

To me this was a tactical error on the government's side as it had not considered all possible consequences of failing to efectively resolved the problem much earlier in time and the single biggest mistake was to send the troops in to deal with a internal security issue without satisfying all the legal procedures.

At one stage Alfredo said that the deaths in Tasitolo which ended up escalating the problem to a higher level of seriousness would not have happened if the government had called instead on the Military Police to go and deal with the petitioners. That however is something we'll never be able to know.

Traduções

Todas as traduções de inglês para português (e também de francês para português) são feitas pela Margarida, que conhecemos recentemente, mas que desde sempre nos ajuda.

Obrigado pela solidariedade, Margarida!

Mensagem inicial - 16 de Maio de 2006

"Apesar de frágil, Timor-Leste é uma jovem democracia em que acreditamos. É o país que escolhemos para viver e trabalhar. Desde dia 28 de Abril muito se tem dito sobre a situação em Timor-Leste. Boatos, rumores, alertas, declarações de países estrangeiros, inocentes ou não, têm servido para transmitir um clima de conflito e insegurança que não corresponde ao que vivemos. Vamos tentar transmitir o que se passa aqui. Não o que ouvimos dizer... "
 

Malai Azul. Lives in East Timor/Dili, speaks Portuguese and English.
This is my blogchalk: Timor, Timor-Leste, East Timor, Dili, Portuguese, English, Malai Azul, politica, situação, Xanana, Ramos-Horta, Alkatiri, Conflito, Crise, ISF, GNR, UNPOL, UNMIT, ONU, UN.