Letter: Deals with Jakarta

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Sir: Dr Peter Carey (letter, 29 April) can rest assured that the Government has the East Timor and Indonesian situation well in hand.

A visit to the Foreign Office website will tell him that the "Key achievements for 1997-98" are that they have "put human rights at the heart of of foreign policy" and, more interestingly, examples of practical progress include a "human rights partnership with Indonesia".

Clearly the partnership agreement did not include the Indonesian army, whose officers have acted like the robber barons of the middle ages. Rape and pillage (not to say torture, murder and atrocities) are in fashion in East Timor and have been for the last 22 years.

Peter Carey is right that a clear, unambiguous message should be sent to Jakarta, but I can hear the Foreign Office even now ... "jobs, jobs, jobs". The same message has been sent to Jakarta for two decades or more under Labour and Tory governments whilst MPs have fumed.

Will this Government live up to its ideals or continue to export the Hawk "trainers" and have the RAF train the pilots who bombed and napalmed the poorly armed defenders of East Timor?

This country has much blood to atone for.