Home     Writers     Op/Ed     Book Reviews     News     Bookstore     Photoshops     Submit     Search     Contact Us     Advertise  
  You are here: 





SOMET Calls for End to Violence and Instability in Timor-Leste
Thursday, 09 August 2007 23:16

August 9 - The Solidarity Observer Mission for East Timor (SOMET) is deeply worried about continued instability in Timor-Leste, despite recent credible elections. Although media reports and past traumas have exaggerated the implications of the limited, sporadic violence of the last few days, we remain concerned that prolonged unrest and allegations of government illegitimacy could undermine Timor-Leste’s fragile democracy.

We urge people to express their views peacefully and legally, without violence. Supporters of all sides should be free to voice their opinions but not to impose them through violence or intimidation. We agree with leaders from across Timor-Leste’s political spectrum who have spoken out against violence, and we hope they will persuade their partisans to remain calm.

Timor-Leste needs a stable government and a peaceful environment to allow it to overcome both long-standing and short-term problems, including those of poverty, security, unemployment, health, justice, infrastructure, and education. Some of these and other critical issues underlie Timor's current insecurity.

SOMET believes that the newly-elected Parliament and President represent the will of the voters, and SOMET reiterates our praise for Timor-Leste’s electorate and electoral officials in conducting three largely free, fair and peaceful elections this year. We continue to believe that legal, constitutional processes are the only way for Timor-Leste to move from its current post-independence adolescence to become a mature, democratic nation.

The four parties which make up the Alliance for Parliamentary Majority include more than half of the members of Parliament. The new Government headed by Prime Minister Xanana Gusmão appears to be the most likely to survive constitutional hurdles, providing essential stability.

Any parties that disagree can use the process provided for in the Constitution by introducing a parliamentary motion of no confidence. If it passes, they will have the opportunity to form their own Government. However, if Parliament affirms its confidence in Xanana Gusmão’s Government, FRETILIN and other parties should accept its legitimacy and serve as a responsible, vigorous and constructive parliamentary opposition. A cycle of repeated Government dissolution and creation and will only add to Timor-Leste's political uncertainty.

We encourage all political parties not in the Government to be strong watchdogs, proposing and advocating alternative policies and legislation. We also expect the Government to respect the opposition and to respond to its views, as well as to those of civil society. Everyone should learn from the policies and attitudes over the past several years and work to restore the confidence of the people in democratic institutions. Timor-Leste needs more cooperative relationships among politicians from all parties, as well as between the government and the people.

SOMET will soon issue its detailed report of its observations of the June 30 election and its recommendations for future electoral processes. Previous SOMET reports are available online at http://www.etan.org/etan/obproject/.

Solidarity Observer Mission for East Timor (SOMET) is a nonpartisan observer mission including both international and domestic non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to monitor the 2007 Presidential and parliamentary elections in Timor-Leste.

SOMET was created by the US-based East Timor and Indonesia Action Network (ETAN), in cooperation with Stichting Vrij Oost Timor (VOT) of the Netherlands, Initiatives for International Dialogue (IID) and the Asia Pacific Solidarity Coalition (APSOC) based in the Philippines, and the World Forum for Democratization in Asia (WFDA), in response to requests from several civil society organizations in Timor-Leste. In Timor-Leste, SOMET cooperates with Asosiasaun HAK, Timor-Leste NGO Forum, La'o Hamutuk, FOKUPERS, Bibi Bulak and the Kadalak Sulimutuk Institute.
More from this author:
Privacy Policy (11446 Hits)
Privacy Policy for V.O.F. Expathos (Atlantic Free Press) V.O.F. EXPATHOS (ATLANTIC FREE PRESS) PRIVACY POLICY Welcome to V.O.F....
Terms of Use (12241 Hits)
V.O.F. Expathos Web Site Agreement The materials that appear on this website are available free of charge. They are published...
About (12642 Hits)
Atlantic Free Press was founded in September 2006 by Publisher Richard Kastelein of V.O.F. Expathos, in the Netherlands and Editor - Journalist Chris...
Advertise (43203 Hits)
To advertise please contact Editor @ atlanticfreepress dot Com ...or use the googleads services here
Help (11969 Hits)
Contact us by email.
Related Articles:
Tomgram: Crusading in the Arc of Instability - George Bush's Crusading Scorecard (2001-2007) (5811 Hits)
by Tom Engelhardt The Look of a War against Islam Just five days after the September 11th attacks in 2001, in a Q and A with reporters...
More Troops, And More Violence (7904 Hits)
by Dahr Jamail and Ali al-Fadhily BAGHDAD, Feb 13 (IPS) - Violence and bombings have only increased after the proposed "surge" of...
Democrats' Calls for Resignations are Pointless Diversions (5151 Hits)
by Dave Lindorff All these calls from Democrats in Congress for Bush administration people to resign are missing, or deliberately obfuscating,...
Bowing Down to Our Own Violence (5580 Hits)
by Norman Solomon Many days after the mass killings at Virginia Tech, grisly stories about the tragedy still dominated front pages and cable...
Oil Sabotage is "As Bad as Ever": Shahristani - 60 Dead in violence - Chatham House Study on Iraq Fragmentation (4862 Hits)
by Juan Cole In an interview with the Independent, Iraq's Oil Minister, Hussein Shahristani said that the sabotage of petroleum pipelines has...

Add this page to your favorite Social Bookmarking websites
Comments (0)add comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger



Top 123