/** reg.easttimor: 3251.0 **/

** Topic: SCMP/Timor: Victims 'left to die' on streets where they fell **
** Written 7:29 PM Sep 10, 1999 by Joyo@aol.com in cdp:reg.easttimor **
Subject: SCMP/Timor: Victims 'left to die' on streets where they fell

South China Morning Post Saturday, September 11, 1999


Victims 'left to die' on streets where they fell

Harbour haven: a refugee, among tens of thousands evacuated, searches for her belongings after arriving at the port of Kupang, in West Timor, on an Indonesian navy ship. Associated Press photo


Most of the East Timorese killed in the violence that has swept the capital, Dili, were left to die where they fell on the street, a French doctor who treated hundreds of wounded in a city clinic said yesterday.

The Medecins du Monde doctor, who fled the territory on Wednesday, said he had treated 200 wounded, including 30 children, in the past five weeks.

"It was mainly gunshot wounds, both homemade guns and automatic weapons. We also had a lot of machete wounds and stabbings," he said in Darwin.

"I only saw a small amount of the total number of wounded. It was so dangerous to come to the clinic that people often didn't even try.

"The bodies were left where they were."

The doctor asked not to be named as he hoped to return to East Timor.

"Part of the team is trying to get back to East Timor. We want to be back in position soon. But I can't get through to the clinic, nor to the [Carmelite] sisters there. Maybe the clinic burned down."

Allegations of widespread killing in East Timor's turmoil are sweeping fast-growing border refugee camps, where an estimated 50,000 people shelter under the gaze of militiamen accused of creating the mayhem.

The UN said yesterday it was investigating reports of executions of East Timorese independence supporters in Indonesian West Timor.

Commenting on unconfirmed reports of massacres in the Indonesian territory, UN mission spokesman David Wimhurst cited sources which claimed to have eyewitness accounts that independence activists had been summarily executed in front of witnesses in West Timor.

"I don't have any idea of the numbers," he said.

Many frightened refugees said they were forcibly sent across the border to camps controlled by the same army and militias spreading terror at home.

An Australian human rights group yesterday accused Indonesian soldiers of posing as United Nations Assistance Mission in East Timor (Unamet) staff to encourage East Timorese to leave the territory.

"The military, posing as Unamet, is telling East Timorese that Unamet is encouraging them to leave East Timor," the Melbourne-based East Timor Human Rights Centre said.

It quoted witnesses as saying some Indonesian soldiers in East Timor were wearing Unamet uniforms, including the mission's blue berets.

The tens of thousands who huddled under blue and orange plastic tarpaulins in one camp near Atambua, 20km west of the border, swapped horror stories, but reports of large-scale killings were impossible to confirm.

"I saw some dead. But I don't know how many or who killed them. I just tried to get out quickly," said Jesus da Costa, a taxi driver who fled Dili on Tuesday at the height of the violence.

The mass military evacuation of East Timorese to West Timor continued yesterday as the Indonesian Government announced 21 billion rupiah (HK$19.5 million) and 1,500 tonnes of rice had been earmarked for the refugees in West Timor. But the state Antara news agency said there was nothing on offer for those left behind.

** End of text from cdp:reg.easttimor **