Parte 2: International Court, M.Bere and the National Interest

By Antonio Ramos Naikoli*

Mari Alkatiri, participated in two successive transitional administrations under UNTAET supervision. He never publicly advocated an international tribunal to judge crimes committed in 1999, including the massacre at the Suai Church. The pragmatism of Mari Alkatiri was because of his lust for power, consists of the following reason: fight for power and economic monopoly.
Since the time of UNTAET until the first Constitutional Government, Mari Alkatiri assumed important portfolios, how to control the power and economy through areas related to oil. In terms of power, Mari Alkatiri had an absolute majority in parliament, had total leverage to promote the creation of an international tribunal. He had all the executive power to move forward with programs for the training of national legal systems. After all, many cases are pending in court and the Public Ministry, which they identified as a cause of lack of sufficient and competent human resources. The trouble for Mari Alkatiri, was that while he held political power, economic power and the judiciary, he did not care about the qualities of people, but as he controlled them, they followed the political and ideological orientation of the master Mari Alkatiri. Going back in time, the parliamentary majority in the 1st Constitutional Government did not support Aniceto Guterres, the current head of the Fretilin parliamentary party to preside as Ombudsman for Human Rights and Justice (PDHJ). The reason, it did not support Aniceto Guterres, was that he was not an easy person to control and play music that Mari Alkatiri recorded. Unfortunately, Aniceto Guterres has already switched to the side of the field of Mari Alkatiri and his speech was limited merely to making a"reply" to the songs that Mari Alkatiri played.

Case of the powers of the Court to release Maternus Bere

In response to the State to release Maternus Bere, a question for Dr.Claudio Ximenes - will the decision of the Suai District Court, violate the UNTAET Regulation No.15/2000? The only District Court which has all the skills to judge serious crimes is the Dili District Court. In the case of Bere, the exclusive competence to pass judgement is, therefore, the District Court of Dili.
At the out set, the decision of the Suai district court violated Reg. 15/2000 itself, because the district court retains the power to issue the arrest warrant, an order to remand the Bere case. According to logical correlation, the judge who tried and condemned Maternus Bere made mistakes. What is the response of Claudio Ximenes in this case? His answer, in apurely legalistic analysis, is to claim that it is the responsibility of the Court, to judge and release, in the Bere case. The problem for Claudio Ximenes, in this case and the time of the decision to the State, is that he was absent and Mrs. Natercia, as acting president,was involved directly or indirectly in the case. Mrs. Natercia also raised the argument of the medical certificate, and shared the same argument put forward by the opposition leader, Mari Alkatiri.
Therefore, Ms. Natercia caused headaches for Mr. Claudio Ximenes, because she was also involved in the Bere case. The divergence of interpretation of the Act and its application reflects, in this case that Mr. Claudio has apurely legalistic reading and Ms. Natercia has a legal/ sociological one. At least Ms. Natercia interpreted the case on the basis of national interest.

In relation to the trial judge who made the mistake, which the decision of Mr. Claudio as Chairman of the Judiciary? It will not be easy for Mr.Claudio Ximenes, annul the decision of the district court of Suai, because it violated its own UNTAET Reg No .15/2000 on the one hand.

And secondly, the opening of a process of investigation against the Judge of the process. If this is so, the President of the Court of Appeal and President of the Judiciary, should reflect a little more, in the reading and interpretation of Bere case, not merely in the light of the legalistic perspective, but also study their involvement in the light of socialogical law. Moreover, the problem that arises now is to have so many cases pending in court. According to figures, around 5,000 cases. It was and is one of the responsibilities of Mr. Claudio, as President of the Court of Appeal, investing in the training of legal practitioners.

External and internal agenda: the International Court

In the Bere case, the coalition for the creation of an international tribunal to try crimes in 1999. Its demands are on behalf of victims. Which victims? Will the voices of the victims be properly represented?

The Youth Movement for Peace and Stability (MJPE), in its statement: "UNMIT, the National Parliament and other politicians not to mention those speaking on behalf of victims do not defend your interests. Because in reality the majority of the people, especially the victims, no longer care about the International Tribunal, as UNMIT, and some members of the National Parliament. The biggest concern of the people, is the path to stability andeconomic development and progress of this country and the eradication of poverty (Dec. MJPE, 06/10/2009).

Social justice is much more important and a priority area within a short period. Peace is not merely the absence of conflict but also on how to eliminate the causes and effects of the conflict. From another perspective, peace is also in the 'absence of hunger. The state has the moral and material obligation, to meet the basic needs of the people.

To enhance the social policy of the IV Constitutional Government, led by Prime Minister Kay Rala Xanana Gusmão, such as allocation of pensions forthe elderly and vulnerable ex-combatants of national liberation and veterans, and grants for mothers and for the children of martyrs.

Of course there are many external agendas that have lined up in Timor-Leste in the pursuit of their interests, especially from international institutions such as the UN through the CHR, some national and international NGOs and some national and foreign personalities, all of whom have fought for the creation of an international tribunal to try crimes in 1999.

But just by limiting time and space themselves, they were ignoring the international community's complicity in the tragedy of suffering experienced by the East Timorese people since the civil war of 1975 and the occupation of Indonesia for 24 years. The one-sidedness of the moralists who demanded an international tribunal for crimes of 1999, on behalf of victims, is evidenced by how they ignore the victims themselves, from 1975 until 1999. In the Civil War, there were massacres committed by East Timorese against East Timorese: massacre in Aisirimou-Aileu, Erbisa-Maubisse, Holarua-Same, among others. The only crime of the victims, was the ideological and political trends. Those who committed the crimes were those who controlled the power at that time.

Some moral and intellectual authors are still alive. Those who, in 1975, inflamed the masses of Fretilin with speeches, 'Burn the enemy', and its materialisation through criminal acts such as setting fire to the opponents and burned the houses. During the occupation, there were many massacres committed by the occupation forces. To name just a few: the massacre of Mausiga-Ainaro 1982, Craras-Viqueque, 1983, Santa Cruz, Dili, 1991, and some places known as a center of torture, such as Jakarta 2-Ainaro, Flamboyang-Baucau, Sanopati 1and 2 -- Dili, among others.

One must identify the authors: moral, intellectual and material:

Moral authors:

The international community represented by the UN, and those who today demand that the international tribunal try crimes in 1999. Governments that have embraced and supported the regime of General Suharto. And the Catholic Church itself, which contributed to the radicalization of the anti-communist campaign, which Western intelligence agencies and the Indonesians used as a basis of argument in the context of the Cold War to support the occupation.


Those intellectuals who planned the strategy to contribute to the operation carried out by the Indonesian army.

Materials Authors:

The Indonesian military and their local and foreign supporters, such as:United States of America, which gave material support and training material, Britain and Australia, among others. Will there be opportunities to create an international tribunal to try all? It is not easy. Dreaming is good, but we must dream realistically. In an analysis of cause and effect, in order for the justice to be fair, its hold receive the same treatment. If there is justice for all, will opt fora more pragmatic position. The case of Maternus Bere serves as an example.


Democratic governance gives democracy to the governed. And the greater political stability, economic well-being of the people, the greater the quality of democracy. An irrefutable fact: when there is greater democracy, there is greater prosperity for the people who embrace it. One does not need to be political or social scientist to realise that. The focus of the government is to invest in more and better qualification ofthe foundational elements (human development) and consolidation of democracy (economic development and transparency of governance) of Timor-Leste.Therefore the opposition has to understand that this moment is a momentthat matters to the State of Timor-Leste, which is beyond party political interests, which is a time to give practical expression to the naturalistic idea that in politics and democracy, the interests of the people come first, then the nation of Timor-Leste and only after that, personal and party political interests!

*Editor of Forum Haksesuk!________________________________

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