SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION 9--CONDEMNING THE VIOLENCE IN EAST TIMOR AND URGING THE ESTABLISHMENT OF AN INTERNATIONAL WAR CRIMES TRIBUNAL FOR PROSECUTING CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY THAT OCCURRED...
(Senate - February 13, 2001)

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[Pages S1349-S1350]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




 SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION 9--CONDEMNING THE VIOLENCE IN EAST TIMOR 
 AND URGING THE ESTABLISHMENT OF AN INTERNATIONAL WAR CRIMES TRIBUNAL 
   FOR PROSECUTING CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY THAT OCCURRED DURING THAT 
                                CONFLICT

  Mr. HARKIN (for himself, Mr. Feingold, Mr. Reed, Mr. Leahy, Mr. 
Kennedy, Mr. Wellstone, and Mr. Kohl) submitted the following 
concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign 
Relations.

                             S. Con. Res. 9

       Whereas the people of East Timor experienced an unprovoked 
     and violent attack in the aftermath of a peaceful referendum 
     in which they cast an overwhelming vote for national 
     independence;
       Whereas at least 1,000 people were killed, thousands more 
     people were injured, 500,000 people were displaced, much of 
     the infrastructure was destroyed, and scores of communities 
     and villages were completely destroyed in East Timor by 
     roving bands of militias and paramilitary organizations;
       Whereas some Indonesian military officers and personnel 
     along with some Indonesian civilian police helped to train 
     and arm the militias and paramilitary organizations before 
     setting them loose to terrorize the people of East Timor and 
     destroy their homes, businesses, and personal property;
       Whereas the Indonesian ranking military officers and 
     civilian police officers not only failed to keep the peace in 
     East Timor once the referendum on national independence was 
     conducted but also, in some cases, actually incited violence 
     and participated in widespread killing, rape, forced 
     displacement, mayhem, and wholesale property destruction;
       Whereas numerous militia leaders who have been implicated 
     in various crimes against humanity in East Timor continue to 
     operate with impunity in West Timor and throughout Indonesia 
     and none have been formally charged and brought to trial in 
     Indonesia for the wave of violence, murder, rape, and terror 
     inflicted on the people of East Timor, in particular, in 
     preparation for, the conduct of, or the aftermath of the 1999 
     referendum;
       Whereas Indonesia is a party to the Universal Declaration 
     on Human Rights and other international human rights 
     agreements and is legally obligated to comply with those 
     agreements;
       Whereas the continuing failure to investigate, indict, 
     prosecute, and secure convictions and appropriate punishment 
     for those responsible for so much death, violence, and 
     destruction among the people of East Timor continues to fuel 
     an environment of terror, fear, and crime in East and West 
     Timor and along their common border, thus trapping tens of 
     thousands in squalid refugee camps and preventing their safe 
     return to their homes;
       Whereas the Indonesian government has failed to follow 
     through on its agreement to provide evidence and accused 
     criminals to the justice system of the United Nations 
     Transitional Administration in East Timor, creating 
     circumstances whereby lower-level East Timorese militia 
     members are brought to justice in East Timor, while East 
     Timorese militia leaders and Indonesian military officers 
     with command responsibility reside in Indonesia without fear 
     of prosecution;
       Whereas the Indonesian government has yet to take all 
     necessary steps to create a court with authority to prosecute 
     past crimes under internationally-recognized human rights and 
     humanitarian law, and the National Human Rights Commission of 
     Indonesia has limited authority to only investigate such 
     violations;
       Whereas, in August, 2000, Indonesia's upper house of 
     parliament passed a constitutional amendment prohibiting 
     retroactivity in prosecutions;
       Whereas repeated assurances to the international community 
     and to Congress by the Indonesian government of impending 
     action against the perpetrators of crimes against humanity in 
     East Timor have produced few noticeable or substantive 
     results; and
       Whereas Congress is deeply disturbed that gross violations 
     of the human rights of the people of East Timor and United 
     Nations personnel rendering basic humanitarian services in 
     East and West Timor have gone unpunished since January 1, 
     1999, and the perpetrators have not been brought to justice: 
     Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives 
     concurring), That (a) Congress--
       (1) deplores the widespread and systematic violence that--
       (A) has occurred in East Timor and in the refugee camps of 
     West Timor since January 1, 1999; and
       (B) has resulted in many murders, rapes, and the near-total 
     destruction of East Timor's infrastructure and numerous 
     villages on that troubled island;
       (2) decries the continued existence of an environment of 
     intimidation, misinformation, instability, terror, and fear 
     among the people living in the refugee camps housing tens of 
     thousands of displaced people, many of whom wish to return to 
     East Timor, but are too scared to freely repatriate and 
     return safely to their home communities;
       (3) denounces the leaders of the militias and paramilitary 
     groups who are responsible for the violent attacks, 
     pillaging, and mayhem that has caused so much suffering and 
     property destruction in East Timor as well as their 
     accomplices in Indonesia inside and outside of that sovereign 
     country's armed forces; and
       (4) continues to support the courageous efforts of those in 
     Indonesia working toward domestic prosecutions of the 
     individuals most responsible for the post-referendum 
     violence, but recognizes that these efforts currently face 
     overwhelming obstacles.
       (b) It is the sense of Congress that the President and the 
     Secretary of State should--
       (1) endorse and support the establishment of an 
     international criminal tribunal for the purpose of 
     prosecuting culpable Indonesian military and police officers 
     and personnel, leaders of local militias and paramilitary 
     organizations, and other individuals who are responsible for 
     crimes against humanity in East Timor, including systematic 
     murder, rape, and terrorism, the unlawful use of force, and 
     crimes against United Nations personnel deployed in East 
     Timor and in the refugee camps of West Timor;
       (2) direct the pertinent agencies of the executive branch--
       (A) to begin collecting and organizing such information 
     (including from intelligence sources), and to provide such 
     appropriate resources, as will be necessary to assist in 
     preparation of indictments and prosecution of cases before an 
     international criminal tribunal; and
       (B) to undertake any additional inquiries and 
     investigations that would further such efforts; and
       (3) work actively and urgently within the international 
     community for the adoption of a United Nations Security 
     Council resolution establishing an international criminal 
     court for East Timor.

  Mr. HARKIN. Mr. President, I am joined today by Senators Feingold, 
Reed, Leahy, Kennedy, and Wellstone in introducing legislation calling 
for the establishment of an International War Crimes Tribunal for East 
Timor. We recently passed the first anniversary of the date when a 
Special United Nations of Commission of Inquiry into the Violence and 
Destruction in East Timor first recommended this course of action.
  As many of us know, back in 1999, after many years of military 
occupation, the people of East Timor were suddenly and brutally 
attacked immediately after they peacefully cast their overwhelming vote 
for national independence.
  At least 1,000 people were murdered and thousands more were injured. 
500,000 people were displaced. And scores of communities and villages 
in East Timor were destroyed by roving bands of militias and 
paramilitary organizations. These militias and paramilitary 
organizations were trained and armed by Indonesian military officers 
and personnel along with the Indonesian civilian police.
  Around this time last year, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan urged us 
to give the Government of Indonesia time to find and punish these 
guilty individuals in Indonesia and to demonstrate their cooperation on 
related criminal investigations and prosecutions with authorities in 
East Timor and the United Nations Transition Authority in East Timor 
(UNTAET).
  But as I stand here today, not a single individual has been charged 
or brought to trial in Indonesia for the wave of violence, murder, 
rape, and terror inflicted on the people of East Timor in preparation 
for and the conduct of the 1999 referendum and its aftermath. A number 
of militia leaders were implicated in these heinous

[[Page S1350]]

crimes--but they have never been formally charged and brought to trial 
in Indonesia or East Timor. They continue to operate with impunity in 
West Timor and throughout Indonesia.
  This is unconscionable. We have shown nothing but patience, and they 
have simply done nothing. The time for sitting back and waiting is 
over, and we must now take decisive and concrete steps to ensure that 
justice is done.
  This legislation I am introducing today is carefully modeled after 
similar legislation that established the International War Crimes 
Tribunals for Iraq, the Balkans, and Rwanda. It consists of three 
parts:
  First, it calls upon the Bush Administration to endorse and support 
the establishment of an international criminal tribunal to prosecute 
all individuals who are responsible for egregious human rights abuses 
in East Timor. These abuses include crimes against humanity in East 
Timor, including systematic murder, rape, and terrorism, the unlawful 
use of force, and crimes against United Nations personnel deployed in 
East Timor and in the refugee camps of West Timor.
  Second, it calls upon the Bush Administration to direct pertinent 
U.S. Government agencies to begin collecting and organizing the 
necessary evidence and information needed to indict and prosecute these 
war criminals before an international tribunal.
  Finally, the legislation calls upon the Bush Administration to work 
actively and urgently within the international community to adopt a UN 
Security Council resolution establishing an international tribunal on 
East Timor.
  In the course of human events, Mr. President, wherever and whenever 
conflict has resulted in great bloodshed, human suffering, and 
destruction, there has been no real peace established without real 
justice. The people of East Timor deserve peace--and to establish 
peace, we must first seek justice.

                          ____________________