Indonesia: July 13, 1999


Troops killed eight rebels in the Aceh province. Two days earlier a retired Army captain was murdered. In May, 41 demonstrators were killed. There is a strong separatist movement in the province. Recent violence has killed over a hundred people and forced 80,000 to flee their homes. As in other parts of the country with separatist movements, there are always local military and civilian groups ready to resist the separatists with force.

On July 1st, the anti-independence militia surrounded UN peacekeeping outpost on East Timor and forced the UN personnel to flee. On July 4th the militia attacked a UN aid convoy. The disorder on East Timor is a result of Suharto's successor promising that East Timor would be offered freedom via an election. The Indonesian army and corrupt officials on East Timor, as well as Indonesian nationalists, formed an armed militia and began a campaign of terror against the pro-independence Timorese. The UN got involved to try and settle the matter via a monitored election, but the situation is getting more and more uncontrollable. The independence vote is now scheduled for late August. Meanwhile, a 274 member UN police force is being brought in to watch over the 800,000 Timorese during the election.

Bloody civil disorder since President Suharto was ousted in May, 1998. Violence includes separatist movements in East Timor, Irian Jaya, Aceh, and Pontianak. There are also many internal disputes, such as in the Maluku islands, where those in the northern islands what to have their own province.




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