TITLE=EAST TIMOR / SITREP (L-ONLY)
INTRO: The United Nations has begun evacuating much of
its remaining staff from its besieged compound in the
East Timorese capital, Dili. A handful of U-N
employees will remain behind in East Timor, which has
been virtually over-run by pro-Indonesia militia
groups. Patricia Nunan reports from Jakarta.
TEXT: The first of five United Nations evacuation
flights from Dili took off to the northern Australian
city, Darwin, Friday morning.
Pro-Indonesia militia-men fired shots at a U-N convoy
of trucks as it headed for the airport in Dili. There
are no reports of any injuries. Among the 167
people being evacuated was the head of the U-N
mission, Ian Martin. But some 200 U-N workers --
including civilian police and military officers --
have chosen to stay behind.
Top U-N officials have said it would be a "disaster"
if the United Nations were to completely withdraw from
The staff was trapped inside the U-N compound in Dili
for days, prior to the evacuation. Pro-Indonesia
militia groups began rampaging through the territory
Saturday, after the United Nations announced the
majority of East Timorese people voted for
independence from Indonesia. Hundreds of people are
believed to have been killed. U-N officials say more
than 200 thousand people have been forced to flee into
West Timor to escape the violence.
The United Nations says the Indonesian military has
been providing assistance to -- or leading -- the
militias in attacks against civilians. Meanwhile, a
delegation from the U-N Security Council is in the
Indonesian capital, Jakarta, to meet with senior
Indonesian officials. After meeting with Indonesian
President B-J Habibi, the group said Thursday it
intends to visit East Timor as soon as it can. No
details of the proposed trip have been finalized.
Indonesia is coming under increasing pressure from the
international community to allow a U-N peacekeeping
force to be deployed in East Timor.
President Clinton Thursday suspended military
relations with Indonesia, until an international
peacekeeping force is deployed. (signed)
NEB/ PN / GC/ wd
10-Sep-1999 00:02 AM LOC (10-Sep-1999 0402 UTC)
Source: Voice of America
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