Monday, March 27, 2006

Seven arrested, 16 houses attacked on Saturday night

“Police have arrested seven people accused of creating instability on Saturday evening in the Dili suburbs of Tasi Tolu, Bairopite and Taibessi, including attacks on 16 houses in the Manleuana area. Speaking to journalists on Sunday, the PNTL General Commander Paulo de Fatima Martins confirmed that the problems occurred due to the East/West issue related to the expulsion of the 591 soldiers from the F-FDTL. He stated that it was not the concerned soldiers themselves who were involved in the disturbances, but rather groups who are taking advantage of the issue to provoke a situation of instability. The Commander explained that some members of the population are spreading rumours about disturbances, with the result that many people did not leave their houses as they normally would over the weekend. It is reported that some business owners also closed their businesses early, and market vendors packed up their goods early on Saturday morning, worried about purported attacks that evening.

Coordinator of the petitioners Gastao Salsinha said that if the population feel that there is currently a tense situation, they should question the F-FDTL General Commander Taur Matan Ruak, as he is the one who took the decision to expel the soldiers.”

Source: Timor Post & Diario Nacional (from UNOTIL Public Information Office, Daily Media Review)

Category: Timor-Leste (East Timor)

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