Indonesian President Dr. D.K. Suharto has reacted strongly to foreign criticism of his country's management?
Indonesian President Dr. D.K. Suharto has reacted strongly to foreign criticism of his country's management of "self determination" in East Timor, the former Portuguese colony. On Tuesday, representatives of the new provisional government of East Timor visited Indonesia to talk to the President.
SYNOPSIS: The 28-member People's Assembly in the East Timor capital of Dili claims to represent the territory's 650,000 people. Last week (1 June) the Assembly voted to integrate East Timor with Indonesia and on Tuesday (8 June) the delegation called at the Presidential Palace in Djakarta to make the request formally to President Suharto. The delegation included 50 East Timorese representatives.
The delegation, which spent an hour with President Suharto and his Cabinet, was led by the Chairman of the Provisional Government of East Timor, Mr. Arnaldo dos Reis Araujo. President Suharto told the delegation that independence was not a problem of recognition by others, but of the people's will and decision. President Suharto said Indonesian leaders wanted to convince themselves first that the people of East Timor wanted to become part of Indonesia.
President Suharto said the Indonesian people should themselves witness and speak with their brothers in East Timor so that a correct and quick decision on integration could be taken. President Suharto said he felt he was meeting brothers long separated from Indonesia by colonialism and the integration petition was received with gratitude, confidence, and responsibility. The delegation returns to East Timor on Saturday (12 June).