Timor-Leste: Reconciliação e regresso da Indonésia
Timor-Leste: Reconciliação e regresso da Indonésia
Table of Contents
  1. Overview
Indonesia's Police: The Problem of Deadly Force
Indonesia's Police: The Problem of Deadly Force
Briefing 122 / Asia

Timor-Leste: Reconciliação e regresso da Indonésia

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Sumário

O estatuto não resolvido de milhares de ex-refugiados que fugiram pela fronteira na sequência de uma votação de 1999 pela independência continua a ser um desafio para a estabilidade de longo prazo de Timor-Leste. Muitos nunca foram bem integrados nas comunidades anfitriãs e estão sendo atraídos para o outro lado da fronteira em pequenas, porém crescentes, quantidades, em função da relativa estabilidade econômica e política do novo estado. Estes regressos devem ser incentivados pelos dois países como uma boa oportunidade para promover a reconciliação entre as duas comunidades divididas pela fronteira. Mas isso vai expor os custos de impunidade para a violência que marcou o referendo de 1999 e ressaltar a incapacidade de implementar as recomendações práticas de duas comissões da verdade, o CAVR, do próprio Timor-Leste, e a Comissão da Verdade e Amizade criada conjuntamente com a Indonésia. É possível que os líderes do Timor-Leste concluam que alguma forma de anistia é o melhor caminho, mas o país não pode dar-se ao luxo de retardar por muito mais tempo amplo debate sobre soluções.

Um quarto de milhão de pessoas fugiu da província de Timor-Leste após o referendo de 1999, muitos deslocados forçadamente pelas forças de segurança indonésias e milícias. Algumas dos milhares de pessoas que permaneceram no Timor Ocidental o fizeram por razões econômicas, muitas outras por causa da pressão de familiares e líderes comunitários. Este último grupo ainda está pouco integrado às comunidades anfitriãs, recusa-se a sair dos antigos campos de refugiados, e está frustrado com o fim do apoio oficial. A estabilidade política no Timor-Leste e a promessa de acesso à terra estão tornando a perspectiva de regresso mais atraente. Mas desinformação, a falta de uma base jurídica clara para sair da Indonésia, e o medo de que o acesso a bens e direitos políticos não será assegurado estão inibindo seu regresso.

Uma pequena minoria de várias centenas de milicianos e ex-líderes pró-integração politizou a questão do regresso. Eles buscam a garantia de que não serão processados por acusações de crimes contra a humanidade e querem reconhecimento como “vítima política” da retirada da Indonésia. A ex-milícia já não representa qualquer ameaça à segurança de Timor-Leste, uma vez que está desarmada e privadamente reconhece a independência como uma realidade irreversível. Mas a perspectiva de seu retorno poderia ser politicamente explosiva para o país, especialmente na ausência de processos judiciais. Ainda que a liderança política de Timor-Leste tenha enfatizado que “a porta está sempre aberta” e a polícia e líderes comunitários reconheçam a necessidade de garantir a segurança dos retornados, há sinais de que será difícil de defender os direitos fundamentais dos antigos partidários da integração.

A melhor maneira para despolitizar o regresso e diminuir o peso político que ainda persiste da ex-milícia e dos líderes pró-autonomia seria trabalhar com a Indonésia para estabelecer um processo formal de regresso. Tal medida ampararia os esforços de reconciliação no longo prazo, ainda que a implementação das recomendações práticas das duas comissões da verdade do país estejam paralisadas. Esse processo terá de ser acompanhado por uma intensificação dos esforços de reconciliação em nível comunitário e uma supervisão rigorosa dos regressos, para garantir que os envolvidos em violência de pequena escala ou aqueles cuja ausência possa ter gerado desconfiança sejam capazes de reintegração. Também exigirá uma política clara sobre como lidar com os processos judiciais, bem como as investigações incompletas.

O governo timorense não é o único responsável pelo impasse atual no que diz respeito à justiça e reconciliação. A Indonésia tem bloqueado sistematicamente os esforços para levar à justiça os líderes militares e as ex-milícias timorenses que vivem lá, recusando-se a cooperar com os tribunais timorenses. A ONU falhou em ajudar a garantir justiça, enquanto ainda dispunha de influência. É o Timor-Leste que arca com os custos. O governo deve trabalhar com o parlamento para desenvolver uma política sobre como avançar com as acusações pendentes. Um tribunal internacional não é uma opção viável e os fracos tribunais domésticos são o único lugar possível para qualquer processo judicial futuro. Qualquer nova iniciativa para levar adiante uma anistia poderia mover-se muito rapidamente; uma “anistia seletiva” é uma das opções sendo discutida pelos principais partidos políticos. A menos que se baseie em critérios legais claros, essa poderia ser a pior opção sobre a mesa, uma vez que não só fecha a possibilidade de justiça para muitos crimes, mas também politizar ainda mais o processo. Persiste o risco de que a decisão de não processar possa levar a uma retaliação violenta contra os suspeitos. Mais certo é que vai complicar ainda mais os esforços para a construção do Estado de direito e garantia de direitos para todos.

O consenso político em matéria de justiça e de reconciliação tem sido difícil, mas é urgente. O parlamento e o governo de Timor-Leste devem seguir os seguintes passos:

  • esclarecer com o governo indonésio através de um memorando de entendimento procedimentos formais para o regresso voluntário de pessoas nascidas no Timor-Leste;
  • desenvolver uma política oficial de apoio aos regressos voluntários, incluindo assistência limitada aos regressos, através de assistência alimentar e apoio à mediação de um período provisório, bem como reforçar o bem-estar e monitorar e elaborar seus direitos ao regressar;
  • debater no Parlamento o relatório da CAVR e projetos de lei sobre indenizações às vítimas e a criação de uma planejada instituição sucessora à CAVR, cujo mandato deverá incluir apoio aos processos de reconciliação da comunidade;
  • renovar esforços para implementar com a Indonésia as recomendações da Comissão de Verdade e Amizade, e
  • comprometer-se publicamente a levar a cabo os processos judiciais existentes nos tribunais nacionais.

Díli/Bruxelas, 18 de abril de 2011

I. Overview

The unresolved status of thousands of former refugees who fled across the border following a 1999 vote for independence remains a challenge to Timor-Leste’s long-term stability. Many were never well integrated into host communities and are being drawn back across the border in small but increasing numbers by relative economic and political stability in the new state. These returns should be encouraged by both countries as a good opportunity to promote reconciliation between the two communities divided by the border. Doing so will expose the costs of impunity for the violence that surrounded the 1999 referendum and highlight the failure to implement practical recommendations from its two truth commissions, the CAVR and the Commission on Truth and Friendship. Timor-Leste’s leadership may yet decide that some form of amnesty is the best way forward, but the country cannot afford to further delay broad discussion on solutions.

A quarter of a million people fled the province of East Timor after the 1999 referendum, many forcibly displaced by Indonesian security forces and militia. Some of the thousands remaining in West Timor are there for economic reasons; many others because of pressure from family members and community leaders. This latter group are still poorly integrated into their host communities, refuse to leave old refugee camps, and are frustrated by the end of official assistance. Political stability in Timor-Leste and the promise of access to land are making the prospect of return more attractive. But misinformation, an unclear legal basis for leaving Indonesia, and fear that their access to property and basic political rights will not be upheld are holding them back.

A small minority of several hundred former militia and former pro-integration leaders have politicised the question of return. They seek assurances that they will not be prosecuted for standing charges of crimes against humanity and want recognition as “political victims” of Indonesia’s withdrawal. The former militia no longer pose any security threat to Timor-Leste as they are unarmed and privately acknowledge independence as an irreversible truth. But the prospect of their return could be politically explosive for the country, particularly in the absence of prosecutions. Even though the Timorese political leadership has consistently underscored that the “door is always open” and police and community leaders acknowledge the need to ensure the security of returnees, there are signs that it will be difficult to uphold the basic rights of former integration supporters.

Working with Indonesia to set up a formal process would be the best way to de-politicise the nature of return and lessen what political leverage the former militia and pro-autonomy leaders still hold. It would support longer-term reconciliation efforts even as implementation of the practical recommendations from Timor-Leste’s two truth commissions have stalled. It will need to be accompanied by renewed efforts at community-level reconciliation and vigorous monitoring of returns, to ensure those involved in low-level violence or those whose absence may have engendered suspicion are able to reintegrate. It will also require a clear policy on how to handle prosecutions as well as incomplete investigations.

The Timorese government does not bear sole responsibility for the current impasse over justice and reconciliation. Indonesia has consistently blocked efforts to bring to justice its military figures and ex-Timorese militia living there by refusing to cooperate with Timorese courts. The UN failed to help ensure justice while it still had influence. It is Timor-Leste that bears the costs. With parliament, the government must work to develop policy on how to move forward with the standing indictments. An international tribunal remains a non-starter and weak domestic courts are the only possible venue for any future prosecutions. Any renewed efforts to push through an amnesty could move quite quickly; one option being discussed by the leading political parties is a “selective amnesty”. If not based on clear legal criteria, this could prove the worst option on the table as it would not only close off the possibility of justice for many crimes but also further politicise the process. There remains a risk that a decision not to prosecute could lead to violent retribution against suspects. More certain is that it will further complicate efforts to build the rule of law and guarantee rights for all.

Political consensus on justice and reconciliation has been elusive but is urgently needed. The parliament and government of Timor-Leste should take the following steps:

  • clarify with the Indonesian government through a memorandum of understanding the formal procedures for voluntary returns by those born in East Timor;
     
  • develop an official policy supporting voluntary returns, including limited assistance to returnees, through food assistance and mediation support during a provisional period as well as strengthened welfare monitoring and elaborating their rights upon return;
     
  • debate in parliament the CAVR report and draft laws on reparations for victims and the creation of a planned successor institution to the CAVR, whose mandate should include supporting community reconciliation processes;
     
  • renew efforts to implement with Indonesia the recommendations of the Commission for Truth and Friendship; and
     
  • publicly commit to the prosecution of existing indictments in the domestic courts.

Dili/Brussels, 18 April 2011

Op-Ed / Asia

Indonesia's Police: The Problem of Deadly Force

My four year-old daughter recently came home from her Jakarta kindergarten with a story about a visit to the school from the head of our local police station. 'If there is a robber and he's running away, the policeman will pull out his gun, fire in the air, and if he doesn't stop then he will shoot him in the leg', she recounted breathlessly.

I have spent 25 years working in and around conflict zones, including more than a decade in Indonesia. My reaction might not have been that of the average parent. 'That', I replied, 'is a violation of Perkap Number 8.' Needless to say, my reference to Police Regulation Number 8 of 2009 regarding Implementation of Human Rights Principles and Standards in the Discharge of Duties of the Indonesian National Police was lost on her. She thought the visit was great.

I had recalled Perkap 8 when re-reading the Hansard of the recent sparring between Australian Foreign Minister Senator Bob Carr and Victoria Greens Senator Richard Di Natale over the police shooting of protesters in Papua. But it is not just in Papua where questionable use of deadly force by the Indonesian National Police (INP) takes place. It happens across the country. And this was what Perkap 8 was put in place to prevent.

Article 47 of Perkap 8 says that 'the use of firearms shall be allowed only if strictly necessary to preserve human life' and 'firearms may only be used by officers: a. when facing extraordinary circumstances; b. for self defense against threat of death and/or serious injury; c. for the defense of others against threat of death and/or serious injury.' This is Indonesian law, taken from the UN Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials, and this is what should be used to assess police actions, wherever in the country they occur.

The fatal shooting on 14 June 2012 of Mako Tabuni, deputy head of the National Committee of West Papua (KNPB), in Jayapura, capital of Papua province, made Senate Estimates in 2012. The shooting of three protesters in Sorong on 30 April 2013, West Papua province, was mentioned in the testy 5 June 2013 exchanges between Senators Carr and Di Natale. You can watch it above.

In the first incident, detectives shot a suspect in the leg as he was running away and then left him to die in a hospital allegedly without making any effort to treat his wounds. In the second, police claim they were threatened by armed KNPB activists. Without more information it is difficult to judge if their response was disproportionate. Police always say they are shooting in self-defense, but it has become such a common excuse that it has started to lose its plausibility.

Cases outside Papua do not garner much attention in Australia, but lethal shootings happen all the time. On 1 September 2011 seven villagers were killed during a rowdy protest against police brutality in the Central Sulawesi district of Buol, a place so obscure even most Indonesians cannot find it on a map.

On 7 March 2013, soldiers burned down a police station in Baturaja, South Sumatra, after their off-duty comrade, First Private Heru Oktavianus, was shot dead by a police officer while speeding away from a traffic violation.

On 8 May 2013 police in Java killed six suspected terrorists in a series of raids. The police usually claim the suspects were armed and resisted arrest. But it is not always true, and many could have almost certainly been captured alive.

Ordinary criminals are shot with distressing frequency, as my daughter's visitor suggests, without any outcry at home or abroad.

Perkap 8 was signed by the then police chief Sutanto, a real reformer. It has not gotten very far. One foreign police officer working on a bilateral community policing program in a large metropolitan command told me he had once seen a copy of the Perkap on the chief's desk but suspected it had been disseminated no further.

Even when progressive regulations or orders are issued and disseminated, they are not always followed. In October 2012, the police chief of Papua, Tito Karnavian, former head of the anti-terrorism unit Detachment 88 (Densus 88), announced that he had banned police from using live ammunition when handling demonstrations in the region. This was progress and it was implemented for some demos, but the deaths in the Sorong case suggest live ammunition was used.

As Article 46 of Perkap 8 says, 'all officers must be trained in the use of power, equipment and firearms that can be used in applying force' and 'must be trained in non-violent techniques and methods.' Training almost 400,000 officers across 33 provinces is a logistical challenge, though it might be a good idea to start with elite units such as Densus 88 or personnel in the Papua provinces.

The new national head of the INP, about to be appointed, might breathe new life into two reforms already in place: implementation of Perkap 8 and Chief Sutanto's other landmark regulation on community policing, Perkap 7. The INP is a very hierarchical organisation that does follow firm orders from above. While its size makes complex reform difficult, its hierarchical nature makes implementing existing regulations with firm orders easier.

The first duty of the incoming INP chief, who reports directly to the president, will be to secure the 2014 elections. Making sure those deployed to safeguard this 'festival of democracy' are properly trained and equipped to use non-lethal force will be an important first step. After a new head of state is elected, he or she should consider issuing a directive that would see Perkap 8 properly implemented. The use of less deadly force could even be politically popular in some parts.

Outside help may also be needed, and this is where Australia comes in. A few decades back, the Victorian state police had a problem of using too much deadly force and created Project Beacon to try to rectify it. They changed the way they thought about the problem, overhauled training, and gave officers on the beat new tools, like pepper spray. Foreign assistance along these lines could help the INP improve performance and increase accountability. Crisis Group has long argued that the INP needs better orders, training, and equipment for the use of non-deadly force.

If the INP is to be more the service it aspires to be rather than the force it is, it needs to shed its military mindset, hold serious post-operation reviews after each fatal incident, and decrease reliance on shooting first and asking questions later, regardless of whether officers are following locally accepted standard procedure. When the time comes and the INP is ready to carry forward the reform of Perkap 8, Australia should be there to help.

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