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In a theatre in the central Javanese city of Solo, a troupe of performers are acting out a fight scene from Hindu epic, the Mahabharata. The god Gatutkaca is dispatching some long-haired bad guys to the delight of the audience.

It is we who are to blame for the UN failure in East Timor

You didn't need to be a rocket scientist to see what might happen when the referendum was held

UN wants troops in East Timor

THE UNITED Nations are proposing to deploy a small number of foreign soldiers in East Timor immediately to help curb violence and protect UN personnel. The plan will be put to Jakarta tomorrow. The UN was drawing up proposals in New York yesterday in consultation with Australia and New Zealand, the two countries best able to contribute troops.

East Timor in turmoil: Why doesn't anyone stop it?

What on earth is going on in East Timor?

East Timor in turmoil: UN Security Council to act as 150,000 flee Timor massacres

HUNDREDS OF people were reported to have been massacred and 150,000 were living as refugees in East Timor yesterday as militias armed and directed by the Indonesian military rampaged through large areas of the territory.

Letter: Britain backed brutal Suharto

YOUR REPORT "Last chance for East Timor" (29 August) refers to the "passive support" the West gave to the Indonesian dictator Suharto when he annexed the territory in December 1975. A closer examination of the historical record reveals a more substantial role of Western support for the Indonesian regime. Ever since his brutal rise to power in 1965, with the covert aid of the CIA, Suharto had been looked upon with favour by the West as someone who would provide "stability" in the region, to the benefit of Western strategic and corporate interests there.

Berets and black shirts spell terror

EAST TIMOR'S descent into violence is being promoted by rampaging groups of paramilitaries opposed to independence. In their black shirts, red berets and sunglasses they are a terrifying sight, determined, it seems, to fulfil the warning of their self-appointed leader Eurico Guterres. He said that if voters chose independence from Indonesia, East Timor would turn into "a sea of fire".

East Timor: Who Are Militias?

At least a dozen groups of paramilitaries are believed to be operating.

Leading Article: Jakarta must bear the blame for East Timor

THE INDONESIAN government is fair and square to blame for the madness of the anti-independence militias who have gone on a lethal rampage in East Timor in the past two days. Police have stood by while the militias, armed by the Indonesian government, have killed and terrorised. Yesterday, the killing continued.

Monitor: All the News of the World: Comment on the escalation of violence in East Timor following their referendum

ANALYSTS HAVE warned that Monday's ballot may not necessarily mean the liberation of the people of East from the strife and violence that have plagued them for more than two decades. Nobody knows for certain what the people's choice in East Timor is. But whatever that choice we hope Indonesia can prove to be truly helpful in guaranteeing a peaceful and orderly transition to a better East Timor. The moment of truth is near and there is no turning back. Should East Timor opt for independence, Indonesia should accept reality and bow out with grace and dignity.

`If poll is lost the slaughter will begin'

A LEADER of East Timor's pro-Indonesian militia groups promised "civil war and slaughter" if Monday's referendum on independence produced a majority in favour of independence. Hundreds of people, including diplomats and journalists, left the capital, Dili, as militia violence spread in several parts of the territory.

UN on brink of quitting Timor base after killings

THE UNITED Nations was on the verge of evacuating one of its offices in East Timor last night after more UN staff were murdered in the latest escalation of the territory's undeclared civil war.

East Timor Vote: Militias block roads in fresh violence

ARMED PARAMILITARIES tightened their grip on East Timor,blocking roads and attacking travellers less than 24 hours after an overwhelming turn-out in the territory's referendum on independence.

E Timor votes in a climate of fear

AFTER NEARLY a quarter of a century of bloodshed, the people of East Timor go to the polls today facing a choice between independence and limited autonomy inside Indonesia.

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