E. Timor deputy prime minister on trial for corruption
DILI, April 11 (AP) - (Kyodo)—A district court in Dili opened a trial on Monday against East Timor'sDeputy Prime Minister Jose Luis Guterres for abuse of power and misuse of state money.

Guterres is accused of appointing his wife Ana Maria Valery to a highly paid job at the East Timor mission to the United Nations in New York and authorizing the payment of salary and allowance to her when he was foreign minister in 2007.

"The intention was to benefit his wife and enrich himself, resulting in irregularities and illegalities prejudicing the finances of the state for private family benefit," the prosecution said in papers filed with the court.

Guterres denied the charge during Monday's court hearings.


ADF urged to stay in East Timor to prevent further crises

The Timor Defence Force would need assistance until 2020, "not least to ensure" it remained focused on defence and not "political activities" and policing, the institute says in a new report.

The 400 Australian Defence Force personnel in East Timor are deployed as part of the International Stabilisation Force, which is mandated to start withdrawing from next year.

Police and legal structures also need to be supported and consolidated, the report says. Police have been trained under the "confusing and internally contradictory guidance" of the UN police deployment.

The government-funded Canberra think tank also sounds an alert about the growing influence of China. "The increasing assertiveness and almost certain expansion of China's 'soft power' approach towards East Timor will challenge Canberra's political influence," it says. Australia should not, it says, "directly compete with China for East Timor's affections".

"Instead, the Timorese may need to be reminded, in more beguiling ways, of where its true and most reliable friendships lie.

"Working with the US in the security and defence realms in our region is also very important."

It says that a relatively small continuing ADF presence should have a cautionary capacity, helping to prevent further crises and, failing that, orchestrating a rapid and efficient response.

When off duty in Timor, ASPI recommends, ADF personnel should not wear uniforms and should not carry weapons in public -- "which elicits negative responses among many Timorese when the threat environment is low". It urges "a more widely distributed intelligence function to allow the recognition of potential threats before and as they arise".

Australia should renew its offer, ASPI says, of contracted air surveillance of Timor's southern exclusive economic zone, heading into the Timor Sea towards Darwin. It suggests greater co-operation between ADF and Australian Federal Police officers, and between both institutions and AusAID to ensure "a more complete approach" to meeting East Timorese needs.

Australia is particularly well positioned, ASPI says, to help East Timor develop its agriculture.

"It has considerable expertise in dry land farming and conducts world-leading research into semi-tropical agriculture and livestock management."

Source: The Australian

Kriasaun Lei Krime Ekonomiku

Tilman: Sei Kontrola Folin Sasan

Prezidente komisaun C Parlamentu Nasional Ne’ebé trata Asuntu Ekonomia, Finansas no Anti Korupsaun Manuel Tilman hatete kriasaun lei krime ekonomiku iha Timor Leste hodi kontrola ba ema ne’ebé halo espekulasaun ba folin sasan. “Horiseik kriminaliza faktu rua ida maka naran embarkamentu, ida maka spekulasaun ne’ebé governu liu husi Ministeriu Turizmu Komersiu no Industria liu liu iha ida departamentu ida fiskalizasaun ekonomika sira ne maka sei hahú, depois ita nia polisia rasik sei hari’i polisia judisiariu liga ho polisia ekonomika no ita nia alfandega rasik maka sei sosializa uluk lei ne’e tamba lei ne’e balun destruidu hela no povu tenke hatene, Polisia, alfandega hodi kontrola folin sasan ne’ebé emprezariu sira hala’o espekulasaun ba folin sasan hodi multa to’o rihun rua nulu, sasan tomak hela hotu ba estadu,”dehan Tilman ba Jornalista iha PN kurta ne’e (13/04).

Nia hatutan Hein katak estabelesemntu lei krime ekonomiku ne’e sei kontrola hotu folin sasan ne’ebé hetan espekulasaun husi emprezariu sira. Tilman afirma “ami ohin ka aban haruka ba PR Jose Ramos Horta hein katak lei ne’e publika ona Jornal Republika tama kedas ona ba ezekusaun”. Iha fatin hanesan deputadu Natalino dos Santos husi bankada CNRT hateten Lei Krime ekonomiku ne’ebé horiseik PN aprova ona ida ne’e bele fo solusaun para oinsa atu bele hatun problema ne’ebé durante ne’e povu hare tamba ita ne’e estadu direitu demokratiku hotu-hotu tenke tuir lei.

“Oinsa atu implementa lei ne’e depois PR promulga, governu maka tenke implementa lei ne’e, husu sidadaun sira hotu atu bele kumpri lei ne’e , agora karik depis lei ne’e em vigor ba ita nia maluk emprezariu sira ka loza nain sira ka ema sira fa’an sasan ne’e maka nafatin halo povu sira hakilar nafatin, hau sente katak ne’e intervesaun husi governu maka tenke hare karik se maka viola regras ne’ebé estabelese ona, nia tenke kompri asaun penal ne’ebé iha no bele halo multa,”dehan Nia.(TE)


Fragile states speak up on aid spending

The g7+ group of the poorest nations wants aid focused on addressing conflict and security. Could this be the year donors start to listen?


Children in the Timor-Leste capital, Dili, wash a UN vehicle outside a cafe frequented by aid workers. Photograph: Joel Rubin/AP

About a year ago, officials from seven fragile states met out of donor earshot to compare notes and air their grievances about how billions of dollars of donor money has been spent on peacebuilding and statebuilding over the years.

Dili, Timor-Leste's capital, was the perfect place to host the first meeting of the g7+ of fragile states – Timor-Leste, Afghanistan, Sierra Leone, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti, Ivory Coast and others. If there's one country that knows about the shortcomings of international aid, its Timor-Leste. More than $8.8bn of aid has been poured into the country, only about a tenth of which has entered the local economy.

Initially heavily aid-dependant after being freed from Indonesian rule in 1999, the half-island nation had much of its infrastructure destroyed by the departing Indonesian military and its militia allies, severely damaging key sectors like health. A slew of aid organisations then set up shop but failed to co-ordinate with local officials exactly what was needed to rebuild the nation.

It's with this in mind that Timor-Leste's outspoken finance minister, Emilia Pires, has been leading a crew of fragile states, – there are 17 involved now – with a clear message that progress towards the millennium development goals can only be maintained with greater focus on addressing conflict and fragility. Part of the problem until now has been that the MDGs don't address security, which alienates a large portion of the aid-receiving world.

Aid has always been donor driven, and while organisations have been talking on behalf of fragile states, the states themselves have barely had a voice. They have seen their nationalist and developmental aspirations overshadowed by unequal power relations, leaving governments preoccupied with making themselves accountable to aid donors.

Since the inaugural gathering in April last year, the g7+ have been meeting on the sidelines of key arenas, such as the MDG review summit last September. And, as their confidence has grown, their voices have started to have an impact.

Bodies like the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) have said that while the international system is slow to move, major players – the UN, the World Bank, the IMF – are finally starting to listen to what the g7+ has to say. Large multilateral organisations have touched base with the group to provide input for aid reviews and begin a dialogue about how donor countries can better support fragile states.

The Timor-Leste prime minster, Xanana Gusmão, has just returned home after stops in Washington, New York and London, where he stressed the importance of the g7+ to government departments, including the UK's Department for International Development (DfID), which has a focus on supporting fragile states. With a year of consolidation under its belt, the group has the attention of major organisations, which now see they have to give fragile states a platform.

This is all leading up to the Fourth High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in December, when major decisions on how aid is spent will be made.

Aid to the world's fragile states has failed. Could 2011 be a turning point for many of the world's poorest nations?

source: www.guardian.co.uk

Xanana Gusmao slaps down PM's plan

Breaking his silence on the asylum-seeker plan Julia Gillard revealed eight months ago, Mr Gusmao said Dili would not have a bar of the idea, according to a report in The Economist magazine.

The report says he "finally put the idea out of its misery" during an interview in London on March 7, in the wake of the Gillard government's insistence the Timor plan remained a live option, despite a chorus of criticism.

"Chief among Mr Gusmao's reasons for opposing the processing centre is the fact that he would not be able to explain to his poor countrymen why foreign asylum-seekers would be entitled to international-grade healthcare, food, clothing and schooling for their children while so many Timorese are not," the magazine says.

News of Mr Gusmao's rejection came as detention centre workers on Christmas Island were told the Immigration Department would open at least one new mainland facility to accommodate the exodus from the tiny Australian territory in the wake of riots that left parts of the centre burnt out and destroyed last month.

Officials for government contractor Serco briefed guards yesterday on Labor's plans to announce the opening of a new onshore immigration detention facility, as preparations were being made for almost 700 asylum-seekers to be shifted off the island in coming weeks.

News of the briefing came as contractors were called in to resume works at the Curtin detention centre in far north Western Australia and sources close to the construction of such facilities said work was being discussed for a Tasmanian-based centre.

Mr Gusmao is a towering figure in East Timor, making it extremely difficult for Australia to negotiate a processing centre while he remains opposed to it.

East Timor did not rate a mention at the two-day people-smuggling summit of 41 member states held this week in Bali.

Mr Gusmao's intervention into the debate about a processing centre came as the Prime Minister repeated that Timor would remain her focus.

Opposition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison said the East Timor plan had died "a death of 1000 hints" and called on the government to scrap the proposal.

lIndonesia yesterday arrested 43 Afghans who were trying to reach Australia, a day after Asian nations pledged to work together to tackle people-smuggling.

Additional reporting: Paige Taylor, Lanai Vasek, AFP

Source: The Australian