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UA 212/93 - Indonesia / East Timor: fear of arbitrary detention / fear of torture: Mateus Brito Ximenes, Clementino Faria, Oscar Goncalves da Silva, Ventura Valentina de Conceicao, Florencio Anunciacao Fernandes, Jose Manuel de Oliveira Sousa, Profirio da

, N° d'index: ASA 21/014/1993

Seven East Timorese asylum seekers who entered the embassies of Finland and Sweden in Jakarta on 23 June 1993 are at serious risk as long as they remain in Indonesia or East Timor. Amnesty International is calling on the Governments of Finland and Sweden to take immediate steps to facilitate their departure from Indonesia. Some of the 7 were arbitarily arrested, beaten and tortured following demonstrations during and after the visit to East Timor of Pope John Paul II in 1989 and by the Ambassador of the USA in 1990. Three of the seven were shot and wounded during the Santa Cruz massacre of 12 November 1991. On 24 June the four who had sought refuge in the Finnish embassy left the premises after doubtful assurances were given by the military that their rights would be protected.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: ASA 21/14/93
Distr: UA/SC
UA 212/93 25 June 1993
Fear of arbitrary detention/Fear of torture
INDONESIA/EAST TIMOR: 1. Mateus Brito XIMENES, 23 years
2. Clementino FARIA, 27 years
3. Oscar Gonçalves da SILVA, 20 years
4. Ventura Valentina de CONCEIÇAO, 23 years (female)
5. Florencio Anunciação FERNANDES, 22 years
6. Jose Manuel de OLIVEIRA SOUSA
7. Profirio da COSTA OLIVEIRA, 23 years
There are serious fears for the safety of seven East Timorese asylum-seekers
who entered the embassies of Finland (Nos. 1-4 above) and Sweden (Nos. 5-7
above) in Jakarta on Wednesday 23 June 1993. Amnesty International believes
that the seven are at serious risk of arbitrary arrest and torture for as long
as they remain in Indonesia or East Timor. It calls upon the Governments of
Finland and Sweden to take immediate steps, by all appropriate means, to
facilitate the departure of the seven from Indonesia. It also demands that
the Indonesian authorities permit the seven to leave the country.
Information gathered by Amnesty International provides clear and substantial
evidence that the seven have, over a period of years, been persecuted by the
Indonesian security forces because of their non-violent political opposition
to Indonesian rule in East Timor. Some of the seven suffered beatings, torture
and arbitrary arrest after participating in public demonstrations during and
after visits to East Timor by Pope John Paul II in 1989 and by the Ambassador
of the United States of America in 1990. The demonstrations aimed to alert
the international community to the appalling record of human rights abuse by
the Indonesian security forces in East Timor. Three of the seven were shot
and wounded by the Indonesian military during the Santa Cruz massacre of 12
November 1991.
On Thursday 24 June 1993 the four East Timorese who had sought refuge in the
Finnish embassy left the premises, apparently after Indonesian military
officials provided assurances that their human rights would be respected and
that they would not be in danger. The current circumstances of the three East
Timorese in the Swedish embassy are unclear; unconfirmed reports indicate that
they too may leave the embassy compound in the near future.
The evidence clearly shows that those who attract international attention to
human rights abuse by Indonesian forces are those most vulnerable to beatings,
torture and other violations. Amnesty International believes that, far from
being protected, the risk of the seven asylum-seekers being subjected to further
abuse may have increased following their unsuccessful appeal for asylum.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
In Amnesty International's view there are a number of compelling reasons why
Indonesian military assurances of respect for the human rights of the East
Timorese cannot be accepted as genuine guarantees of their safety.
In the first place, asylum-seekers who have been returned to the authorities
in previous years have suffered serious human rights violations. Seven East
Timorese who sought asylum in June 1989 left the embassies of Japan and the
Vatican after receiving virtually the same assurances that their human rights
would be respected. In February 1991 a confidential military intelligence
document revealed that five of those seven, Fernando de Araujo, Marciano Garcia
da Silva, Carlos da Silva Lopes, Agapito Cardoso and Lucas da Costa were under
permanent military surveillance because of their non-violent political and
human rights activities. In May 1992 Fernando de Araujo was sentenced to nine
years' imprisonment. The judge said the long sentence was warranted because
of his attempts to " gain the sympathy of the international community for the
abuse of human rights in East Timor". He is a prisoner of conscience.
Second, it cannot be assumed that assurances by governmental authorities, even
those at the highest level, will be respected by members of the security forces
in East Timor or elsewhere in Indonesia. For example, the International
Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in June 1993 suspended visits to political
prisoners in East Timor for the third time this year, after the military in
East Timor continued to place unacceptable restrictions on the visits, thus
making it impossible to monitor the safety and well-being of political detainees
in the territory. These restrictions had been imposed despite assurances by
the President and the Minister of Foreign Affairs that unrestricted access
to prisoners would be granted.
Third, the Indonesian Government has consistently denied reports of even the
most well-documented and widely publicized human rights violations in East
Timor, preferring instead to question the political motives of those, including
Amnesty International, who have reported them. Few reports of human rights
violations are investigated by the authorities and, virtually without
exception, the perpetrators have gone unpunished.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail
letters either in English or in your own language:
To the Governments of Finland and Sweden:
- expressing concern for the safety of the East Timorese asylum-seekers who
have sought refuge in their embassies;
- noting that Amnesty International has documented the arbitrary arrest and
torture of some of the asylum-seekers and that some were shot and wounded by
Indonesian soldiers during the Santa Cruz massacre in Dili, November 1991;
- noting that Indonesian government assurances of respect for the human rights
of East Timorese have consistently been breached by military authorities;
- urging the Government of [Finland or Sweden] to take immediate steps, through
all appropriate means, to facilitate the departure of the seven asylum-seekers
from Indonesia.
APPEALS TO:
1) Heikki Haavisto
Foreign Minister
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Merikasarmi
00160 Helsinki
Finland
Telegrams: Foreign Minister, Helsinki, Finland
Faxes: +358 0 1341 5009
Salutation: Dear Minister Haavisto
2) Margaretha al Ugglas
Foreign Minister
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Gustave Adolfstorg 1
S-10323 Stockholm
Sweden
Telegrams: Foreign Minister, Helsinki, Sweden
Faxes: +46 8723 1176
Salutation: Dear Minister al Ugglas
To the Government of Indonesia:
- expressing concern for the safety of the seven
asylum-seekers;
- calling upon the Government of Indonesia to permit the seven
East Timorese asylum-seekers to leave the country.
APPEALS TO:
1) President:
President Suharto
Presiden RI
Istana Negara
Jl. Veteran
Jakarta
Indonesia
Telegrams: President Suharto, Jakarta, Indonesia
Telexes: 44283 BIGRA IA; 44469 DEPLU IA
Faxes: (via Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
Salutation: Dear President Suharto
2) Minister of Foreign Affairs:
Ali Alatas S.H.
Menteri Luar Negeri
Jl. Taman Pejambon 6
Jakarta
Indonesia
Telegrams: Minister Alatas, Ministry Foreign Affairs, Jakarta, Indonesia
Telexes: 44205; 44469 deplu jkt
Faxes: +62 21 36 0517; +62 21 36 7782
Salutation: Dear Minister Alatas
and to diplomatic representatives of Sweden, Finland and Indonesia accredited
to your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 6 August 1993.

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