Censure debate in East Timor over militia leader’s freedom


There have been rowdy scenes in East Timor’s Parliament during a censure debate.

The ruckus occurred as members of the opposition Fretilin party pushed a motion against the government of Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao.

The government’s decision to free Indonesian militia leader Martenus Bere has frustrated the opposition.

Bere was arrested in August for his role in a string of human rights violations including the 1999 Suai church massacre in which up to 200 people were killed.

Former Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri told Parliament on Monday freeing Bere violated the country’s constitution.

As he spoke opposition members shouted that the government had undermined East Timor’s independence.