17 August 2012

Residents on the Indonesia-East Timor Border agree to Resolve Conflict through Adat

Rofinus L Abi, Kepala Desa Sunkaen
East Timor Legal News 17 August 2012 Source: Kompas.com Sigiranus Martho Bere KEFAMENANU, – The 67th Indonesian Independence Ceremony (17 August 2012) in the Kecamatan of Bikomi Nilulat, Kabupaten Timor Tengah Utara (TTU), Nusa Tenggara Timur which borders with Pasabe in the Oekusi District of East Timor was interesting. Community leaders from 6 villages which are on the border agreed to an harmonious relationship and to create conditions which are conducive to peace between the two countries.

The community issued a declaration that was read out by the Village Head Sunkaen Rofinus L Abi that contained 4 important elements.

First, the local communities will keep the peace along the border line between Indonesia and Timor Leste. Second, the community will undertake efforts to maintain good relations through adat (customary laws). Third,  the community will abide by the applicable international laws. Fourthly, the community will always maintain peaceful stability at the 5 survey points along the border that are still unsettled in a neutral zone in the Indonesian territory particularly in the Kecamatan Bikomi Nilulat.

Especially in relation to the last statement concerning the disputed survey points, there is still no complete and sound certainty. The five disputed points are at Subina in the Village of Inbate, Pistana in the Village of Nainaban dan Desa Sunkaen, Tububanat in the Village of Nilulat, Oben in the village of Tubu and the last one is at  Nefonunpo in the village of Haumeni Ana where there was a recent conflict. 

Unfortunately, the reading of the declaration was only attended by Indonesians while the residents of Pasabe in Timor-Leste who had been invited by the Camat and people of Bikomi Nilulat to attend the reading of the declaration could not attend the state ceremony.

Meanwhile, the Camat of Bikomi Nilulat, Lodovikus Lake, said that although there had been a conflict that had occurred some time ago between the residents of the two countries, all parts of the community will seek a resolution of the problem through adat because the cultures of the two communities on either side of the border, in Bikomi Nilulat as well as Pasabe were the same and were integrated through familial relationships that were still strong. 

Earlier, on 31 July 2012, residents of the Villages of Haumeni Ana, Kecamatan Bikomi Utara, Kabupaten TTU, NTT were involved in a fight with residents from Pasabe in Oekusi District in Timor-Leste that arose when a Timor Leste customs and immigration post was built 20 meters inside Indonesian territory.

The local residents of each country threw stones and sharp objects at each other for about 15 minutes but it was eventually brought under control by Indonesian and Timor-Leste military personnel. 

The fight did not result in any deaths or injuries but caused the local people to be on constant alert. Editor : I Made Asdhiana. Translation © by Warren L. Wright BA LLB. 17/08/2012


Original Indonesian Text follows: Warga Perbatasan RI-Timor Leste Sepakat Selesaikan Konflik Penulis : Kontributor Timor Barat, Sigiranus Marutho Bere | Jumat, 17 Agustus 2012 | 16:47 WIB KEFAMENANU, KOMPAS.com - Upacara HUT ke-67 Kemerdekaan Republik Indonesia, Jumat (17/8/2012), di Kecamatan Bikomi Nilulat, Kabupaten Timor Tengah Utara (TTU), Nusa Tenggara Timur yang berbatasan dengan Pasabe, Distritu Oekusi, Timor Leste berlangsung menarik. Pasalnya tokoh masyarakat di enam desa yang berada persis di garis perbatasan, sepakat untuk berdamai dan menciptakan suasana yang kondusif diantara kedua negara.


Masyarakat sepakat membuat surat pernyataan yang dibacakan oleh Kepala Desa Sunkaen Rofinus L Abi yang berisi empat hal penting. Pertama, masyarakat setempat akan tetap menjaga perdamaian di sepanjang garis perbatasan antara Indonesia dan Timor Leste. Kedua, masyarakat akan berusaha untuk senantiasa menjalin hubungan secara harmonis melalui tata cara adat istiadat yang berlaku. Ketiga, masyarakat akan selalu menaati semua aturan hukum internasional yang berlaku di kedua negara. Keempat, masyarakat akan tetap menjaga stabilitas perdamaian pada lima titik konflik perbatasan yang masih bermasalah atau zona netral di wilayah NKRI khusus di Kecamatan Bikomi Nilulat.

Khusus untuk pernyataan yang terakhir menyangkut lima titik konflik yang dimaksud, sampai saat ini masih belum dipastikan sepenuhnya aman. Kelima titik tersebut masing-masing Subina di Desa Inbate, Pistana di Desa Nainaban dan Desa Sunkaen, Tububanat di Desa Nilulat dan Oben di Desa Tubu dan yang terakhir Nefonunpo di Desa Haumeni Ana yang sementara ini bergejolak.

Sayangnya pembacaan surat pernyataan tersebut hanya dilakukan dan dihadiri oleh warga Indonesia, sedangkan warga Pasabe,Timor Leste, yang sedianya telah diundang oleh Camat Bikomi Nilulat dan warga, untuk ikut dalam acara kenegaraan tersebut berhalangan hadir.

Sementara itu Camat Bikomi Nilulat, Lodovikus Lake mengatakan meskipun ada konflik yang terjadi beberapa waktu lalu antara kedua warga yang berbeda negara, namun seluruh elemen masyarakat akan berusaha menyelesaikan secara adat karena budaya antara kedua warga, baik itu Bikomi Nilulat maupun Pasabe sama dan masih memiliki hubungan keluarga yang erat.

Sebelumnya pada 31 Juli 2012 warga Desa Haumeni Ana, Kecamatan Bikomi Utara, Kabupaten TTU, NTT lerlibat bentrok dengan warga Pasabbe, Distritu Oekusi, Timor Leste yang dipicu oleh pembangunan Kantor Bea Cukai dan Imigrasi Timor Leste yang masuk 20 meter ke dalam wilayah Indonesia.

Warga kedua negara saling baku lempar menggunakan batu dan benda tajam selama 15 menit namun berhasil dileraikan oleh aparat TNI perbatasan dan tentara Timor Leste. Bentrokan itu tidak menimbulkan korban jiwa dan luka-luka. Namun pascabentrokan itu membuat warga selalu was-was. Editor : I Made Asdhiana

See also
Indonesian Official Discuss Border Tension with East Timor
Chief of Staff of Indonesian Land Forces: Timor Leste Did Not Take Area of Land belonging to Indonesia
Clash erupts between Indonesians and East Timorese in Free Zone
Three Sections of RI-Timor Leste Border Still Disputed
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