[Etan-key] ETAN Urges Secretary Rice to Promote Justice and Rights,
Not Military Might, During Trip to Indonesia
John M Miller
fbp at igc.org
Fri Jan 6 06:13:42 PST 2006
Rights Group Urges Secretary of State to Promote Justice and Rights,
Not Military Might, During Upcoming Trip to Indonesia
For Immediate Release
Contact: John M. Miller (718) 596-7668; (917) 690-4391 (cell)
Karen Orenstein (202) 544-6911
January 6 - The East Timor and Indonesia Action Network (ETAN) today
urged Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to support justice, peace
and human rights - rather than military assistance and impunity -
when she visits Indonesia this weekend.
"If Secretary Rice wishes to promote a forward-looking agenda, she
can start by making clear that military assistance remains contingent
on accountability and real reform," said John M. Miller, National
Coordinator of ETAN. "Secretary Rice's message to senior Indonesian
officials will be a test of whether the U.S.'s support for democracy
in Indonesia consists of more than rhetoric."
"By recklessly waiving restrictions on U.S. military assistance to
Indonesia late last year, Secretary Rice has abandoned the best
available leverage to press for genuine reform," continued Miller.
"If she is unwilling to withdraw the waiver, Secretary Rice should at
a minimum delineate clear benchmarks that must be met before the U.S.
provides any foreign military financing and lethal equipment.
Otherwise, the unreformed, corrupt Indonesian military will continue
to perceive any U.S. assistance as an endorsement of business-as-usual."
"One benchmark should be Indonesia's acceptance of the UN Commission
of Experts' recommendations that it cooperate with international
efforts to prosecute senior figures for massive human rights
violations in East Timor. A pledge to broadly circulate and discuss
the findings of the East Timor truth commission's recent report upon
its release should be another marker," said Miller. "Such a call
would have added credibility if the U.S. government made a similar
"We hope media reports that Rice will seek a formal agreement from
Indonesia not to extradite U.S. citizens to the International
Criminal Court (ICC) are inaccurate. If true, such a request would
make a mockery of any calls for justice and accountability," he added.
"West Papua has been long-neglected by the international community.
Secretary Rice should use her visit to highlight ongoing human rights
violations and question the military build-up there. The Secretary of
State should press Jakarta to heed calls from West Papua for
demilitarization, a fair share of the income from its resources and
respect for fundamental rights. Finally, she should demand that
Indonesia fully open West Papua to the outside world," said Karen
Orenstein, National Coordinator of ETAN.
"The recent publication of details of extensive cooperation between
the Indonesian military and the mining corporation Freeport-McMoRan
highlights the level of intimate U.S. involvement in West Papua.
Secretary Rice should make clear that U.S. corporate collusion with
the Indonesian military is unacceptable," Orenstein added.
"Secretary Rice should also warn that plans to deploy thousands of
troops to Aceh, supposedly to help with tsunami reconstruction, risk
undermining the peace accord that ended the conflict," said Orenstein.
Last November, the Department of State issued a waiver removing all
remaining congressional restrictions on U.S. military assistance to
Indonesia. Congress had imposed various restrictions on military
training for Indonesia since 1992 and banned most types of weapons
sales following the 1999 destruction of East Timor by Indonesian
security forces and their militia proxies.
The U.S. government, as part of its campaign to undermine the ICC,
has negotiated bilateral impunity agreements with about 100
countries. These agreements exempt U.S. citizens from extradition to
the international court. Like the U.S., Indonesia has not joined the ICC.
ETAN advocates for democracy, justice and human rights for East Timor
and Indonesia. ETAN calls for an international tribunal to prosecute
crimes against humanity committed in East Timor from 1975 to 1999 and
for continued restrictions on U.S. military assistance to Indonesia
until there is genuine reform of its security forces. For additional
background, see <http://www.etan.org>www.etan.org.
ETAN welcomes your financial support. For more info:
John M. Miller Internet: fbp at igc.org
East Timor & Indonesia Action Network:
48 Duffield St., Brooklyn, NY 11201 USA
Phone: (718)596-7668 Fax: (718)222-4097
Mobile phone: (917)690-4391
Web site: http://www.etan.org
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