30 March 2011

JSMP Launches three reports on the Justice Sector in Timor Leste

Press Release Period: March 2011 Edition: 18 March 2011 - On 18 March 2011, JSMP launched three reports, namely ‘An Overview of the Justice Sector in Timor-Leste 2010’, ‘A Critical Analysis of the Legal Framework’, relating to the protection of victims of Gender Based Crimes in Timor-Leste, and a ‘Report on the Training Activities and Seminars/Workshops’ on the justice sector, role of judicial actors and access to the formal justice system, which were provided to local authorities, youth, police and students. These reports were launched at the JSMP Office, Rua Setubal, Kolmera,Dili.

According to the Executive Director of JSMP, Luis de Oliveira, 2010 was a productive year in several areas, because the courts and other legal institutions were able to handle a variety of challenges and resolve some major sensitive cases related to incidents in 2006 and 2008.

The three launched reports are intended to emphasize the achievements and challenges faced by the courts in the performance of their mandates.   These three reports will serve as comprehensive and substantial reference points for the people of Timor-Leste on the facts and realities encountered by the justice sector in 2010.

The Overview of the Justice Sector Report highlighted critical matters affecting the justice sector and analyzed developments/achievements and challenges faced during 2010. This report also discusses events that occurred in 2010.

JSMP believes that 2010 was a landmark year for the justice sector in Timor-Leste, because in 2010 a number of important cases were processed and resolved by the courts. For example, the 11 February 2009 case, the case relating to an Attack on the Residence of Taur Matan Ruak, and the Fatu-Ahi case. Important pieces of legislation were approved, including the Law Against Domestic Violence, and several draft laws are being developed including the Draft Law on Juvenile Justice, Draft Law on Legal Aid, and Draft Civil Code.

Issues that have been keenly debated such as the issue of the Presidential prerogative to grant pardons are underlined:  this report also questions a number of issues and urges authorities, related institutions, and other components of the legal process to be consistent and to fulfill their respective duties in accordance with the principles enshrined in the Constitution, international law and other laws.

In addition, the Critical Analysis of the Legal Framework relating to the protection of victims of Gender Based Crimes in Timor-Leste explains the legal framework that deals with gender based violence, practical challenges and practical recommendations on how the related institutions can improve in the future.  JSMP believes that this report will serve as a substantial reference for the justice sector and the general public, because it provides concrete facts about the experiences of women in the formal justice system by analyzing three cases based on the real experiences of the VSS in the field as part of the legal aid that they provide to victims. This report acknowledges that currently Timor-Leste has a relatively comprehensive legal framework to regulate and protect victims of gender based violence; however in practice, victims still face a variety of challenges in relation to their ability to implement and enjoy their rights. Therefore, this report was entitled: Legal Protection for Victims of Gender Based Violence:  Laws Do Not Yet Deliver Justic.

The third report discusses training and information that was given by JSMP to local authorities, youth, police and students. It provides general analysis on the public’s understanding and view of the justice sector, women’s access to the justice sector including the role of local authorities and other key groups in the context of strengthening protection and support for victims of gender based violence at all levels of the process.

JSMP believes that these reports will be valuable references for the community of Timor-Leste on the achievements of the justice sector in 2010.  JSMP hopes that in 2011, and in the future, all parties will continue to strive to invest in the justice sector as one of the crucial pillars of the rule of law in a democratic nation.

JSMP also wishes to thank everyone for working hard in 2010 in order to guarantee and uphold the rights of all people, the principles of democracy, and the rule of law as an important foundation for governance in Timor-Leste.

JSMP would like to specifically thank donor institutions such as USAID, The Asia Foundation, Justice Facility, The Royal Norwegian Embassy Jakarta and Misereor from Germany. In addition, JSMP also wishes to thank all other legal institutions such as the district courts, prosecution service, public defender’s office, private lawyers, police from the VPUs, as well as the court clerks, who have contributed their support to enable JSMP to compile these reports. Your support and cooperation is greatly appreciated and will have a significant impact on the establishment of a strong justice sector to guarantee the rights of all people as set out in the law.

This report is available in three languages: Tetum, English and Indonesian.

United Nations Police officially hand over security responsibility to the PNTL

Televizaun Timor-Leste, March 28, 2011 language source: Tetun - The United Nations Police in Timor-Leste on Saturday officially handed over security responsibility to the Timorese National Police (PNTL).

The process of handing over the security responsibility was done through signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao and the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General, Ameerah Haq, at the Government Palace.

Prime Minister Gusmao said starting from March 27, the security sector in the country will be managed by PNTL. “Starting tomorrow at 00:00 Timor-Leste time, the PNTL will handle security management and the United Nations Police will provide their support and this is a new step for our police,” Prime Minister Gusmao said.

The Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General in Timor-Leste, Ameerah Haq, said although the UN Police had handed over security responsibility to PNTL, they will continue to professionalise PNTL officials so that they can carry out their work more effectively in the future to ensure security and stability in the country.

“What we will have now is comprehensive development plans for training, for capacity building, and we will be working very closely with each other during the remaining time that UNMIT is in this country and we will be supporting the Government and working very closely as well,” Ameerah Haq said.

PM Gusmao also called on the PNTL officials to carry out their work professionally and effectively to guarantee security in the country.

Police find a grenade in Hotel Timor

Hotel Timor in Dili
Timor Post, March 28, 2011 language source: Tetun - The Timorese Police Commander Commissioner Longuinhos Monteiro has confirmed that the Timorese National Police (PNTL) detected a grenade and a laptop in Hotel Timor, Dili.

Monteiro predicted that the objective of putting the grenade in the Hotel Timor was probably to ruin the hotel by unknown people as some international guests were staying at the Hotel to participate in a ceremony handing over security responsibility from the United Nations Police to PNTL.

He adding that he decided not to publicise this case otherwise people would worry about the situation in the country.

"I do not want to pubicise this issue. It is true that we found a package when the Indonesian delegation representative Lieutenant General Bonis Bere came to the Hotel Timor," Monteiro said.

16 March 2011

Launch of the Timor-Leste Transparency Portal

Launch of TL Transparency Portal 15.3                                                                                                   

12 March 2011

Apocalyptic destruction shocks world as monster tsunamis leave countless dead in Japan

ETLJB 12/03/2010 - Gigantic tsunami waves have smashed into Japan's northeastern prefectures destroying entire towns, laying waste to transport, communications and industrial infrastructure and leaving countless dead after a monstrous earthquake measuring 8.9 Richter struck off the county's coast yesterday afternoon.

A shocked world witnessed the terrible events as they happened with ocean surges up to 10 metres (33 feet) high sweeping across the countryside demolishing everything in their path.

Dozens of huge aftershocks and separate and perhaps related quakes in the nation's northwestern region  have continued to terrify and traumatise the people of Japan while world governments offer unlimited assistance pending requests from the Japanese authorities.

A nuclear emergency has also been declared by the Government of Japan as damaged atomic energy generators in the region begin to leak radioactivity into the environment.

The Prime Minister has grimly warned his people of the possiblity of even greater tsunamis hitting the coast today.

As the horrifying scale of the catastrophe becomes more evident, ETLJB again expresses the deepest condolences to the Japanese people.

Video shows tsunami engulfing Japanese city

11 March 2011

Solidarity with Japan as massive quake sends giant tsunami into Pacific coast

ETLJB 11/03/2011 ETLJB expresses profound solidarity with the people and nation of Japan after a gigantic earthquake has caused an enormous tsunami to crash into the country's Pacific coast engulfing entire towns and sweeping all before it.

The Japanese people have been strong supporters of East Timor and we sympathise with them and are deeply shocked by the terrible losses and damage that will be revealed once the tsunami subsides.

10 March 2011



East Timor ups ante in LNG dispute, as floating processing plan is deadlocked

Peter Alford, Jakarta correspondent The Australian March 10, 201112:00AM - EAST Timor is threatening to cancel its historic treaty with Australia covering the Greater Sunrise liquefied natural gas development unless the Woodside Petroleum-led venture agrees to local processing.

Woodside's $14 billion Sunrise development proposal is already deadlocked by East Timor's rejection of its floating LNG processing plant, but chief petroleum negotiator Francisco da Costa Monteiro has raised the stakes.

He told The Australian East Timor would seriously consider terminating the treaty at the first opportunity, February 2013, if the dispute remained unresolved.

Mr Monteiro said the Dili government would take into account "all consequences" of ensuring Sunrise gas was piped to East Timor, "even be it a breaking-up of the treaty".

"Any treaty must ensure the two sides are happy, but at the moment Timor Leste is not happy and I speak not just as a commissioner but for all Timor Leste citizens," said Mr Monteiro, who represents his government on the Sunrise Commission, the joint Australia-Timor regulatory body.

The Treaty on Certain Maritime Arrangements in the Timor Sea runs 50 years from February 2007, but either country can terminate in February 2013 if there is still no development approval.

The treaty resolved the problem that 80 per cent of the field was under Australian jurisdiction, although disputed by its tiny neighbour, by dividing gas and condensate royalties 50:50.

East Timor gets a 90:10 royalty split in the Joint Petroleum Development Area, which covers 20 per cent of Sunrise.

Overturning the treaty would return Greater Sunrise to first-base negotiations and reopen the longstanding boundary dispute, frozen by the treaty until 2057.

Woodside, which holds 33.4 per cent of the field, estimates the resource at 5.13 million cubic feet gas and 226 million barrels of condensate.

ConocoPhillips has 30 per cent, Shell 26.6 per cent and Osaka Gas 10 per cent.

The December Sunrise Commission meeting broke down when East Timor asked for suspension of consideration of Woodside's proposals while rights over the "downstream" project were clarified.

Dili appears to be pressing Canberra -- which has refused to intervene on commercial considerations -- to take a direct role in negotiations.

East Timor wants the gas piped to Beacu on the south coast, where an LNG plant would anchor the government's ambitious southern industrialisation plan.

Woodside argues the Timor option would cost $5bn extra, while floating LNG would maximise benefits it estimates at $US13bn ($12.9bn) to East Timor over the project's life, and $US19bn to Australia.

It argues a pipeline across the deep Timor Trench is "technically feasible" but poses "technical, operational and commercial difficulties".

Woodside's largest objection is additional financing cost -- a suggested 6 per cent risk premium -- associated with a project in a country that has never had such development.

Secretary of State for Natural Resources Alfredo Pires said he had best industry advice there were no outstanding technical difficulties with the pipeline.

East Timor had other serious issues with Woodside's project shaping. "But should everyone align with the Timor Leste LNG option, then we are ready to move yesterday," he said.

"We feel that one pipeline (from Bayu-Undan) has gone already to Australia and has provided a number of benefits to the people of Australia, particularly Darwin, and it is only fair that the next one does the same things for the people of Timor Leste."

While the dispute continued, he said, East Timor would spend up to 18 months on studies establishing that Timor LNG was viable and commercial.

Mr Pires questioned the operational viability of floating LNG, developed by Shell -- which was still to launch its first FLNG project, Prelude off WA -- and an "extraordinary" reduction in the gas resource estimate from 7tcf to 5.1tcf.

Mr Pires criticised Woodside chief executive Don Voelte, who retires this year, claiming other partners told him they also were unhappy with his "arrogance".

"So we look forward to discussing Greater Sunrise with the next chief executive of Woodside . . . I think his level of frustration has just got the better of him now."

A Woodside spokeswoman declined to comment. However, she pointed to a February 21 presentation by Mr Voelte indicating that FLNG was unanimously endorsed by the partners, met all treaty obligations and Woodside was "driving forward" to a final investment decision.

Speaking afterwards, however, Mr Voelte evinced impatience with approval problems and said Woodside had other, unspecified options.

Parliament commences proceedings to suspend Minister Arcanjelo Leite

East Timor National Parliament in session
JOSEFA PARADA ­ SUARA TIMOR LOROSAE ­ 08 March 2011 - DILI ­ The Baucau District Court has written to the national Parliament to suspend the Minister for State Administration and Territorial Planning, Arcangelo Leite who is suspected of having abused his power.  The letter from the court was tabled in the plenary meeting of the National Parliament last Monday 8 March 2011 and passed onto the parliaments Ethics and Parliamentary Mandate Committee I for its consideration.

The request from the Baucau District Court was made by Judge Ana Paula Monetiro de Jesus, was directed to Fernando Lasama de Araujo, the President of the National Parliament.

The letter stated, “For the purposes of enabling the proceedings against the member of government Mr. Arcangelo de Jesus Gouveia Leite, Minister for State Administration and Territorial Planning, I request Your Excellency to determine the suspension of the above named.  This is pursuant to Article 113 Numbers 1 and 2 of the Constitution of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste (CDRDTL).  I annex copies of folios 242 to 257 of the accusation as well as the annexed folio 289.”

The Vice President of the National Parliament, Maria Paixao said that the letter has been received by the Parliament’s Secretariat, and now it has been sent onto Committee I to deliberate over the request and deliver a report to the national parliament for discussion in the plenary.

“The Secretariat of the National Parliament has sent the letter off to Committee I to prepare a report to the National Parliament.  The question of whether or not to suspend from functions so as that he can face court is one that will be decided by a session of the plenary of parliament.”

The Secretariat of the Parliament delivered the letter to Committee I and handed it directly by the Vice President of the National Parliament to the Chair of Committee I, the Deputy Maria Fernanda Lay.

However, the Deputy Chair of Committee I, Deputy Jacob Xavier said that though the letter had been handed to Committee I, the committee has been unable to get a quorum of Deputies to finalize its opinion to the plenary session.

The Minister for State Administration and Territorial Planning, Arcangelo Leite told STL by telephone last Monday 7 March, that he was ready to go and answer in court at any time.

“As a Timorese citizen I am ready to go and answer before the court at any time.  I am also ready to cooperate with justice.  As for the matter of my suspension by the National Parliament, I am ready to accept any decision the national Parliament may make and still cooperate with justice,” said the Minister.  (Ends)

06 March 2011

PNTL Commander to take necessary action against officer

 Televizaun Timor-Leste, February 26, 2011 language source: Tetun - Deputy Timorese Police Commander, Commissioner Afonso de Jesus, said they will take the necessary action against an officer of  the Immigration Department Police who is suspected of maltreating his wife.

De Jesus said the Judicial Department of PNTL received an official letter from the State Secretary for Security, asking for an investigation into the matter.

"I have confirmed with the head of the Judicial Department. They will ask the police to investigate this case. We want to know the truth, because the suspect is an officer of the Immigration Department Police, he is aware of the law, but why did he commit domestic violence.

This case can be viewed from two sides, as an individual and as police officer who committed an act of violence.

People always link this case to the institution and it has affected the image of PNTL. Therefore we have to investigate this case profoundly," de Jesus said. De Jesus added that any violent actions committed by anyone, should be investigated and be processed legally, to find the truth.

Police confirm suicide of Pakistani man

Timor Post, February 28, 2011 language source: Tetun - The Criminal Investigation Service (SIC) Deputy Commander, Superintendent Calisto Gonzaga, said that though it was believed that Waziar Ali, who was recently found dead in his kitchen, was murdered, based on the evidence found, the fact is that he killed himself.

"The fact is that he committed suicide, and we do not have any other facts that prove that he was murdered," Superintendent Gonzaga said.

Superintendent Gonzaga added  that they will publicise the results of the autopsy, adding that they have reported this case to the Public Prosecution to file it and recommend an official letter allowing SIC to investigate this case profoundly.

Court sends official letter to the Parliament

President of the East Timor Parliament, Lasama de Araujo
Suara Timor Lorosa'e, March 1, 2011 language source: Tetun - Parliamentary President Fernando "Lasama" de Araujo confirmed that the Court has sent an official letter to the Parliament informing the Parliament about a fixed day for the trial of the Deputy Prime Minister for Social Issues, Jose Luis Guterres.

"The Dili District Court has sent an official letter to me, they did not ask the Parliament to remove the political immunity and it puts me in a difficult situation," Lasama said.

Lasama added that the letter sent by the court to the Parliament was to inform the parliament about the judicial process of criminal acts committed by Deputy Prime Minister for Social issues, Jose Luis Guterres, as he was accused by the Public Prosecution of engaging in abuse of power and corruption.

Luta Hamutuk calls on Government to prevent prostitution

Timornewsline, March 1, 2011 - Dili, Timornewsline,- Luta Hamutuk's (LH) Director, Mericio Akara, has called on the Government to produce a strong system in order to regulate and ban people from engaging in immoral activities like prostitution in the country.

Akara said the system being set up within the immigration department was not strong enough to control foreigners who use tourist visas.

"Our state should create a good system within the immigration department, so that the immigration department's officers could control those people who go in and out of the country," Akara said.

Akara stressed prostitution is an immoral act that contradicts with Timorese culture and norms including the doctrines of the Catholic Church; therefore it was important for the Government to detain the companies who engage in human trafficking.

MP Mateus de Jesus, said that it was important for Immigration Department officials to check the visas of foreigners carefully who come in and out of the country, as it is part of preventing them from engaging in prostitution in the country. "I am calling for the government to encourage the immigration police to hold inspections of the foreigners that enter and leave the country," MP de Jesus said

See also Prostitution in East Timor an analysis of the social problem of prostitution in East Timor

Parliament elects Maria Natercia Pereira as permanent judge for Court of Appeal

The East Timor Court of Appeal
Radio Timor-Leste, March 2, 2011 language source: Tetun - The Timorese Parliament has overwhelmingly elected Maria Netercia Gusmao Pereira as a permanent judge for the country’s Court of Appeal.

Pereira was nominated by the National Congress for the Timorese Reconstruction (CNRT), while another candidate Duarte Tilman was nominated by the Democratic Party (PD).

MP Adriano Nacimento from the PD Party said he is displeased with the result of the vote, as all CNRT and Fretilin Party MPs voted for Ms. Pereira.

MP Duarte “Dusai” said they voted for Pereira, as she is an experienced legal practitioner in the country.

Parliamentary President Fernando “Lasama” de Araujo said the Parliament conducted this vote according to the Article 125 of the Constitution.

Police have identified person who stabbed medical doctor from Cuba

Timor Post, March 2, 2011 language source: Tetun - Manatuto District Police Commander Superintendent Assistant Sebastiao Alves Quintao confirmed that they have identified the person who is suspected of stabbing the medical doctor, Gizela Hernandes, from Cuba.

Quintao said there were many people who were believed to be involved in this case, but only one of them, with the initials EHS, who was definitely suspected of assaulting Hernandes and therefore the police are monitoring him.

“This is a criminal case, and therefore the process for this case is continuing.” Quintao said. He added that the police decided to monitor the movements of the suspect due to the delay of the authorisation letter from the court to detain him, and to control him so as to keep him from organising people from doing undesirable things in the future.

Emilia Pires to assume post of Deputy PM for Social Issues temporarily

Timor Post, March 2, 2011 language source: Tetun - Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao has decided to replace Jose Luis Guterres temporarily from his post of his Deputy for Social Issues so that he can be testify in court. 

He will be replaced by Emilia Pires. Prime Minister Gusmao sent an official letter to President Jose Ramos Horta, the Parliament President Fernando “Lasama” de Araujo, the United Nations Special Representative to Timor-Leste, and other Government’s officials about his initiative to nominate Finance and Planing Minister Emilia Pires to substitute Deputy PM Guterres.

The letter was sent by PM Gusmao on February 28 from Havana, Cuba. It was stated in the letter that PM Gusmao asked President Jose Ramos Horta to substitute Deputy PM Guterres with Minister Emilia Pires temporarily, because Guterres will face court today.

MP Fernanda Borges from the National Unity Party (PUN) took an action to respond to the letter of PM Gusmao saying that PM Gusmao had not suspended Guterres but just substitute him temporarily with Minister Emilia Pires.

Parliament President Fernando “Lasama” de Araujo, said that PM Gusmao decided to substitute Guterres, because Guterres will appear in the court in March 2, 2011 to be tried.

CNRT calls for investigation into Ana Pessoa

Diario Nacional, March 2, 2011 language source: Tetun - The National Congress for the Timorese Reconstruction (CNRT) has called on the country’s Court of Appeals to investigate current Prosecutor-General Ana Pessoa, as she is suspected of being engaged in abuse of power and corruption when she was the minister for state administration.

CNRT MPs made the call during a plenary session on Tuesday (1/3) in the Parliament.

MP Natalino dos Santos from CNRT said in 2006, Mrs. Pessoa produced electoral cards for Timorese citizens from a budget totaling US $1,113 through a single source tender and the project was run by the VIP Computer Company. The process of procurement was centralised in the Ministry of State Administration and that process breached the law. Such a process shows that Pessoa has engaged in corruption,” Dos Santos said.

Gangs to keep the peace in East Timor

05 March 2011

F-FDTL Commander to investigate suicide of soldier

Televizaun Timor-Leste, March 3, 2011 language source: Tetun - The Timorese Defence Force (F-FDTL) Deputy Commander, Brigadier General Lere Anan Timur said the F-FDTL will hold an investigation into the suicide committed by one of its soldiers.

General Lere made the statements after meeting with President Jose Ramos-Horta to inform him of the suicide of Sergeant Armando Gomes Pereira on Tuesday, March 1st.

General Lere confirmed that the soldier committed suicide by shooting himself, and this could happen within any military force, but it is important to hold an investigation into the case to uncover what the motive was.

"We have regular meetings every Wednesday with the President of the Republic to inform him about the security situation in the country.

Suicide is normal and always happens within the defence force and it also happens in many other places. But it is unclear to me why he committed suicide, and therefore I will investigate this case," General Lere said. The dead body is now in the Mortuary of the National Hospital of Guido Valadares for an autopsy.

Deputy Prime Minister Guterres: "I am innocent, not corrupt"

Suara Timor Lorosa'e, March 3, 2011 language source: Tetun - Deputy Prime Minister for Social Issues, Jose Luis Guterres, said he was innocent, because he did not engage in corruption.

"I am coming to the court with a high conscience as I am innocent," Deputy Guterres said.

He added that he has no intention to engage in corruption to benefit himself.

Guterres made the statement after attending the first trial process in the Dili District Court, because he was accused by the Public Prosecution of engaging in crimes such as abuse of power and corruption.

The trial process for Deputy PM Guterres was lead by panel judge Joao Ribeiro and two other members Joao Velgal and international judge and Alvaro Reitas.

They added that they could not continue the trial process or the reading of accusations from the Prosecutor General made against Guterres due to the fact that the political immunity of Guterres has not yet been removed by the Parliament.

Courts postpones trial for Guterres

Timor Post, March 3, 2011 language source: Tetun - The Dili District Court has postponed the trial for Deputy Prime Minister Jose Luis Guterres to April 11 and April 14, 2011, as the Parliament has not yet removed the political impunity of the current deputy prime minister.

The trial was also postponed because the Deputy Prime Minister Guterres' spouse, Ana Maria Valerio, did not appear in court.

"The court cannot conduct the trial when a government official is still exercising his function," Judge Joao Ribeiro said.
Parliament ready to remove Guterres' immunity Timor Post, March 3, 2011 language source: Tetun - Parliamentary President Fernando "Lasama" de Araujo said he accepts the courts' demand to remove the political impunity of Deputy Prime Minister Jose Luis Guterres so that they could help facilitate the process of the trial.

Lasama affirmed that if the court wants the Parliament to remove the political impunity of Guterres, they will process it.

Lasama also said he is currently waiting for a material examination from the Committee I about Guterres' political immunity to be discussed before making a decision. "I am currently waiting for when the committee has submitted its material examination to the plenary for discussion," Lasama said.

Horta says yes to extending PNTL General Commander's mandate for another two years

Timor Post, March 4, 2011 language source: Tetun - President Jose Ramos Horta said he preferred extending the Timorese National Police (PNTL) General Commander's mandate for another two years, as the Government should keep in mind preparations for the general elections in 2012.

"We know that the Government gave him two years; therefore it needs to be renewed for another two years so that he can make some changes," Horta said.

Horta also said it is better not to replace the current commander as a process of change within the PNTL is still going on.

Fatumata students engage in clash

Suara Timor Loro Sa'e, March 4, 2011 language source: Tetun - Two students from the Fatumeta pre-secondary school were injured during a clash between the students yesterday morning.

The director and teachers at the school made the decision to stop classes in order to help quell the clash.

An unnamed source said the teachers preferred to resolve the problem as soon as possible by involving the parents of the students.

TNI soldiers illegally enter Naktuka

Diario Nacional, March 4, 2011 language source: Tetun - MP Duarte Nunes from the Committee B for defence and security said Indonesian National Armed Force (TNI) soldiers have illegally entered the country in the area of Naktuka; in the enclave district of Oe-cusse.

Nunes explained that the TNI soldiers entered the border calling on local residents there not to hold any activities in the disputed land area.

Nunes affirmed that he was informed by the Timorese National Police (PNTL) commander saying the TNI soldiers have twice crossed the country's border illegally.

He called on the Government to speed up the process of resolving the border demarcation between Timor-Leste and Indonesia, so that local residents in the area could remain calm.

Police help Government to close downs bars and restaurant in Aitarak-laran

Radio and Televizaun Timor-Leste, March 4, 2011 language source: Tetun - The Government, through the Ministry of Tourism, Commerce and Industry (MTCI), in cooperation with the police, has forcibly closed down a bar and restaurant in Aitarak-Laran near the country's presidential palace, as they were used for prostitution.

Monitoring and Analysis Chief for MTCI, Jose Fereira Martins, said these places were closed down; due to the owners using them for prostitution.

"We have forced them to close these places, as they were used for prostitution," Martins said.

During the operations, the police were able to capture three Chinese and two Indonesian women.  The operations were held in cooperation with the Timorese National Police (PNTL) and the UN Police.

03 March 2011

US$25 thousand missing from the Ministry of Education

East Timor Minister for Education Joao Cancio Freitas
Suara Timor Lorosa'e, February 22, 2011 language source: Tetun - MP Ilda Maria da Conceicao from Fretilin, has called on the Criminal Investigation Service (SIC) to investigate the case of US $25 thousand that went missing within the Ministry of Education.

"I have heard that US $25 thousand has been lost in the Ministry of Education, particularly in the office of the Minister Joao Cancio Freitas," MP da Conceicao said.

MP da Conceicao made the statements regarding the recent rumors saying that US $25 thousand had gone missing within the office of the Ministry of Education, adding that some staff and secretaries of the Ministry of Education were alleged to be engaged in corruption. The staff of the Ministry of Education refused to comment on this issue as they have no clear information about this case.

Pakistani man commits suicide

Televizaun Timor-Leste, February 22, 2011 language source: Tetun - A Pakistani who was doing business in Timor-Leste was found dead in his kitchen. It is believed to be a suicide. The late Mazaer Ali, who was married with Virginia da Costa, had stayed in Timor-Leste for two years and they were blessed with a daughter from their marriage.

Virginia da Costa, the wife, said that they never had any serious problems, adding that she knew nothing about what caused her husband to kill himself.

"He was drunk and I told him that it was almost evening and therefore you have to go sell the "Terang Bulan" cakes, but he replied it was none of my business and this was the small quarrel we had. We have never had any serious problems so far," da Costa said.

The Criminal Investigation Service (SIC) and the United Nations Police are conducting an investigation at the scene in order to find out what pushed Ali to commit suicide.

Fretilin MP's accuse chief of village in Kulu-Hun of sexual abuse

Radio Timor-Leste, February 21, 2011 language source: Tetun - MP Josefa Alvares from Fretilin has accused the chief of village in Kulu-Hun of sexual abuse against a young woman who was turning in her document to apply for Timorese National Police (PNTL).

MP Alvares said that the chief of , engaged in the sexual abuse at the victim's house.

"In order to complete her documents, then she needsnan official recommendation letter from the chief of village, but the chief of village and sub-village went to the victim's house at night and the chief of village drugged the victim," MP Alvares said.

MP Alvares stressed that the chief of village should be an example of good behavior for his people and should not commit immoral actions.

Chief of Kulu-Hun Village, Jose Lorenco Pereira Borges, said that the accusation made by MP Josefa Alvares was an act of defamation, and therefore he called on the Criminal Investigation Service (SIC) to investigate the case in order to uncover the truth.

CNE urges Parliament to discuss and approve the election law soon

Televizaun Timor-Leste, February 18, 2011 language source: Tetun - The National Commission of Elections (CNE) President Faustino Cardoso has urged the Parliament to discuss and approve the draft law on elections soon in order to facilitate CNE to make preparations for the upcoming election.

"The process of elections is good if it is naturally competitive and informative. It should inform the public before, during and after the election. Our demands are the Parliament should speed up the discussion of the electoral law in order to give space for the competent institutions such as CNE and STAE to implement the referred law," Cardoso said.

Deputy Parliamentary President, Vicente Guterres, has confirmed that Parliament has put in it in the agenda to discuss and approve the election law soon in order to facilitate the work of CNE.

Alkatiri calls on political leaders to respect the constitution

Mari Alkatiri, Conceptor of FRETILIN
Televizaun Timor-Leste, February 18, 2011 language source: Tetun - The former Prime Minister, Mari Alkatiri, has called on political leaders who are currently working within Government institutions to abide by and respect the constitution as it is part of strengthening national unity among the people.

Alkatiri said that it is important for all political leaders to respect the competence of each institution of the Government, adding that a lack of respect for the competence and roles of another institution will have a negative impact on the people and the country.

He added that respecting RDTL's constitution means respecting the competence of each institution in carrying out their work in the field when serving the people.

"The most important thing is that all the people should respect the RDTL constitution. All people should respect the law, because if we talking about the  constitution then it means that we are talking about the separation of powers, where the President of Republic, Parliament, Government and the Courts have their own competence," Alkatiri said.

He added that, "If all people respect the competence of each state body then it will easy for the leaders of the state to strengthen national unity in the country."

19 accused people will be tried

Prosecutor-General Ana Pessoa Pinto
Radio Timor-Leste, February 19, 2011 language source: Tetun - Prosecutor General Anna Pessoa Pinto said the 19 accused people recommended by the international commission of inquiry into the 2006 outbreak of violence are going to be tried.

Pinto said the legal process for these cases case has taken a long time, at least four years, because the accused and witnesses had not collaborated with the investigation process.

"Some witnesses and accused people are afraid and their residence is not permanent as they used to move from one place to another place," Pinto said.

Pinto added that another difficulyt being faced is the lack of qualified lawyers and that had hampered the processing of this case, adding that the law for protecting witnesses had not been implemented yet and that makes witnesses afraid of giving their testimony.

Indonesian army attacks and destroys state facilities in Timor-Leste

According to this piece from Tempo Semanal, there were 17 well-armed Indonesian National Army(TNI) on the 24/2/2011 once again illegally ventured into the territory of Timor-Leste storming and destroying warehouse built in Naktuka, Oecussed District by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of Timor-Leste.

This is not the first time the disgruntled if not organised TNI carried out such immature acts along the border of TL and Indonesia. Despite the frequent disturbances, Jakarta has not yet up to this stage taken any serious measures against its forces. The two governments of Timor-Leste and Indonesia have been working on demarcation, the TNI pays no heed to the effort by the civilian authorities. Two things can be drawn from these cases.

Firstly, Indonesia, despite its proclaimed-success of democractic transition to democracy, the military still yields the power.

Secondly, this displays dissatisfaction of the armed forces towards the indepedent Timor-Leste. The Border Patrol Unit (or UPF) of Timor-Leste, a well-armed police forces unit of Timor-Leste indeed has shown a great maturity for not retaliating against those actors.

The government of Timor-Leste and the international community must condemn these acts that have the potential of fomenting disturbance along the border of the two countries.

Jakarta should stop concocting its cheap excuse that it is only 'elements' of the TNI, this not the first case, it has been a frequent disturbances, something is wrong with the TNI institution. If the Indonesian authorities fail to act, this would only blemish Indonesia's reputation as a great country in the region.

TNI ‘Invade’ tan Naktuka, Fasilidade Estadu TL Lori Todan Tempo Semanal-Oekuse, 02.03.2011 - Timor Leste ninia enklave Oekuse ne'ebe isoladu husi rai bo'ot nasaun ninian sempre sai vitima ba forsa TNI ninian iha rai ketan. Akontesimentu sira ne'e la'os dala ida maibe beibeik ona no Jakarta ho Dili mos hatene atetude sira ne'e.

Membru Tentara Nasional Indonesia (TNI) pelotaun ida hamutuk ema nain17 iha loron kinta feira 24/02 dadersan tuku 9 tama illegalmente iha area Naktuka Aldeia Manan, Suco Bene Ufe  Sub-Distritu Nitibe Distritu Oecusse konsege estraga fasilidade estadu nian hanesan Armagen Ministerio Agricultura Floresta no Peskas (MAFP) iha fronteira Naktuka.

 Komandante UPF distritu Oecusse, Arlindo Cofitalan ba TS iha nia servisu fatin Aldeia Sanane Suku Costa Sub-Distritu pantema-Kasar Tersa Feira (01/03) dehan membru  TNI sira ne’e tama iha fronteira Naktuka nunka halo koordenasaun ho elementus UPF atu halao siguransa konzuta, maibe derepenti de’it sira tama no estraga sasan iha armagen MAFP.

TNI sira tama mai iha area naktuka ho armas funu nian kompletu no konsege estraga fasilidade armagen MAFP.

Fasilidade Governu TL ninian ne’ebe estragus maka hanesan Janeila iha sala enkontru, plafon iha uma laran, ventuiña, baku rahun sanyo, no katana ida lakon, pasta husi extensionista sira nian, no han hotu hudi tasak ramun ida no soe nia kulit iha armagen laran halo foer sala enkontru.

Relasiona ho problema ida nee, iha loron Segunda feira (28/02) UPF hamutuk ho komandante military UN nian iha Oecusse, ba hasoru malu ho Komandante TNI iha fronteira Oepoli hodi konfirma, tamba razaun TNI sira tama iha area naktuka nunka halo koordenasaun ho membru UPF.

Komendante UPF ne’e la sastesfas ho atetudi membru TNI estraga propriedade estadu RDTL nian.
Iha fatin la hanesan director MAFP distritu Oecusse, Jose Oki rekuinese membru TNI sira tama ilegalmente no konsege halo estragus ba sasan MAFP nian. Membru TNI sira tama iha area Naktuka konsege simu obrigatorio sabi odamatan portaun boot no tama direitamente iha area Armegen hodi halo estragus.
Informasaun hirak nee hau simu husi extensionista MAFP Naktuka Sisto Neno ho komandante polisia fronteira Naktuka. Akontesimentu ida nee halo nia parte senti triste tebes, nee duni ejiji ba governu liu husi Ministerio Negosio Estranjeiru RDTL nian atu lalais resolve problema ida nee para povu iha fronteira Naktuka bele servisu ho hakmatek.

Entertantu membru Parlamentu Nasional husi bankada Fretilin, Arsenio Paixão Bano informa katak problema Naktuka desde tinan kotuk mosu membru parlamentu nasional husi bankada maioria ho oposisaun sempre levanta problema ida nee maibe nai ulun sira husi governu, liu-liu Ministerio Negosio Estranjeiru, la iha seriedade politika ida nebe diak maka situasaun Naktuka sei sai hanesan nee ate agora.

Negosiasaun nebe ita halo ho governu Indonesia sempre faila, ministerio negosio estranjeiru ho governu la konsege resolve problema Naktuka. Hau atu informa tan katak, Naktuka la’os rai sengketa, rai neba ita nian, nee duni tuir los governu tenki iha interese boot ba problema neba.

Provokasaun husi TNI iha Oekuse akontese fila-fila ona no iha tinan 2010 hafoin TNI sira tama iha fatin hanesan Governu haruka sekretariu do Estadu de Defeza ho Brigaderu Jeneral Lere halo vizita ba fatin refere hodi haree ho matan besik liu incidenti sira ne’e. (TS).

02 March 2011

TEMPO SEMANAL: DR. Pinto Informa Lala'ok F-FDTL, Husu USA Investe iha Baze Naval Kosta Sul

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Petition to the Court of Appeal on Constitutionality of Budget Law 2011

Petition to the Court of Appeal on Constitutionality of Budget Law 2011                                                            

Rape, Marital Rape and the Law of Timor-Leste

RAPE, MARITAL RAPE AND THE LAW OF TIMOR LESTE - In the context of Timor Leste, the word “rape” several times it was misused or misinterpreted by many people in some extends. It is not only misused by the common people who do not study law however, some people who study law as well, include those who work either in the women rights or in the human rights field in general. A paternity case which is supposed to be considered as a civil matter, sometimes, they considered it as a rape case. Things are mixed up sometimes.  It is happen because they just speak out what they understood and heard from mouth to mouth without cross checking the right term to be put in the right context. The source to find the correct definition of the word “rape” is the law which regulate that matter or other related international instruments which regulate such a rape matter. The definition outside the law, sometimes, in this sense will not be considered by the court in the decision. In the context of Timor Leste, Decree Law no.19/2009 which approves the Penal Code and Law no.7/2010 on Domestic Violence are the sources to find the correct definition with regard to the word “rape”. The rape in question shall be considered as a crime and as a public crime whether it is a marital rape or non marital rape both are criminal matters. Absolutely any type of rape is criminalized by Timor Leste’s laws.

Decree law No.19/2009 which approves the Timor Leste Penal Code has defined clearly the distinctions between sexual aggression with sexual exploitation and sexual abuse. Sexual exploitation is regulated in section II of Chapter III. Sexual abuse is regulated under section IV of the Chapter and Sexual coercion and rape are defined clearly under the sexual aggression which is provided for under section II of Chapter III of the mentioned decree law. Specially, in regard to rape case is defined clearly under article 172 of Penal Code: “Any person who, by the means referred to in the previous article (article 171), practices vaginal, anal, or oral coitus with another person or forces the same to endure introduction of objects into the anus or vagina is punishable with 5 to 15 years imprisonment”.

In relation to “merital rape”, the above descrived article does not emphesize much on merital rape. However, by the existence of Law on Domestic Violence, Law No. 7/2010, which is provided for under article 35 (b) and article 36, strongly emphesized that merital rape is included as a crime and as a public crime under the law on domestic violence.

If the merital rape in question exists or claimed by the victim in question, Law on Domestic Violence, as an especial law shall be applied. As paragraph 2 of sub-paragraph b of article 2 with regard to the concept on Domestice Violence of the mentioned law, defined: Sexual violence, understood to be any conduct that constrains any person to witness, engage, or take part in an undesired sexual relation, even if within marriage, through intimidation, threat, coercion or use of force, or that limits or annuls the exercise of one’s sexual and reproductive rights;

To sum up, both merital rape and non-marital rape are criminalized by Timor Leste’s laws. The term “rape” in this sense is referred to a criminal matter. It is not a civil matter. In this regard, rape matters criminilized by Law on Domestic Violence as the especial law and Penal Code as general law.

Article 11 of Law no. 7/2010 on Domestic Violence demands Government to include topics relating to human rights in school curricula, particularly topics related to gender, including references to the importance of love, sexuality, and the principle of the negotiated settlement of conflicts.

by: Timotio de Deus

Graduate Student
Transnational Law and Business University (TLBU)
The Graduate School of Law in Seoul
South Korea

TEMPO SEMANAL: Xanana Nominated Emilia As CareTaker And Allow His Deputy PM To Stand Trial

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