Vice President of East Timor governing council makes shock revelation JosИ Ramos-Horta, Vice President of the interim ruling council of East Timor (CNRT) reveals that one year ago, in September 1999, the Portuguese Prime Minister threatened President Clinton that Portugal would leave NATO if the USA did not take a firm position against the military dictatorship in Jakarta. West turns blind eye to TERROR, MURDER AND GENOCIDE It will be remembered that on 30th August, 1999, 80% of the population of East Timor voted for independence from Indonesia in a referendum sponsored by the UNO. As the USA and EU turned a blind eye, armed groups of Indonesian soldiers and pro-Indonesian militia started a campaign of massacre, terror and genocide against the Maubere people of East Timor. Portugal, the former colonial power, abandoned the territory in 1974 after US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger gave permission for the Indonesian Armed Forces to invade (an action he later admitted to be a grave mistake). Portugal launched the alert in the international community that if nothing was done, the population of East Timor would be annihilated. Shock revelations by Nobel Peace Prize-winner Ramos-Horta, Nobel Peace prize-winner together with Bishop Carlos Belo of Dili, capital of Timor, makes the following revelation that shocks NATO… Quoting sources which include President Clinton himself, Ramos-Horta states that AntСnio Guterres telephoned Clinton during September 1999, when the campaign of terror was in progress, and said : “If the US does not support this [initiative to send a UNO mission to East Timor] Portugal will have to leave Kosovo and Portugal will have to leave NATO”. As the US and its allies hesitated, without doubt concerned about the effect the loss of billion-dollar arms deals signed with Jakarta’s military dictatorship would have on their own economies, Portugal stood firm…but alone. In Lisbon, massive and spontaneous popular demonstrations took place outside the US and UN missions. Finally on 20th September, 1999, the UN mission INTERFET landed in Dili. It should be remembered that Portugal occupies a strategic position at the Atlantic entrance to the Mediterranean Sea and that the Atlantic islands of Madeira and the Azores are Portuguese territory. The USA has an important air base at Lajes, Azores. Portugal’s threat shows that a small country with a firm position and strategic importance can move mountains…and save a people from extinction, despite the indifference of the international community. Tim BANKROFT-HINCHEY Correspondent of PRAVDA.Ru Lissabon

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