JSMP urges Australian Prime Minister to Respect Timo r Leste’s Constitution

Hi Deborah,

Hope your well.

I certainly recall how the Australian media sidelined PM Alkatiri in
2006, think maybe Howard and Downer deliberately used this tactic to
sideline Alkatiri and promote the idea that power legally rested with
Gusmao. According to my family the same tactic was used in Britain
during 2006.

Good the JSMP has clarified the Constitutional power rests with the
government after approval by the parliament, but a great pity that
this was not clarified in 2006 – think this would have stopped the
crisis in its tracks.

Best wishes Lidia

> Thankyou JSMP for providing such a concise and clear explanation of
> the Constitutional power “… the general policy for this country rests
> with the Government, after approval by the Parliament. It does not
> rest with the President’”
> Many will recall how the majority of Australian media, and our PM and
> Foreign minister at the time, (Howard and Downer) also made this
> mistake continuously during the 2006 crisis when PM Alkatiri was
> relegated by them to the sideline seemingly to believe that power,
> legally speaking, rested with the then President Gusmao.
> This was conveniently used at the time to create the impression with
> the Australian public that the elected government especially its
> leader was undemocratic and indeed illegal and deals could be done
> without him and his government. Indeed here in Australia Gusmao was
> considered by the general public to hold a position similar to the US
> President!
> After this debacle by PM Gillard it is hoped in future Australian
> media and politicians will not make this mistake regardless of their
> political bias and that the Australian public now understands the
> Timorese system of government a little better.
> Deborah Durnan
> From: east-timor-owner@lists.riseup.net
> [mailto:east-timor-owner@lists.riseup.net] On Behalf Of ETAN
> Sent: Wednesday, 28 July 2010 11:15 PM
> To: east-timor@lists.riseup.net
> Subject: JSMP urges Australian Prime Minister to Respect Timo r
> Leste’s Constitution
> Press Release
> Edition: 8 July 2010
> JSMP urges Australian Prime Minister to Respect Timor Leste’s
> Constitution
> JSMP urges the Prime Minister of Australia, Julia Gillard, to respect
> the Constitution of Timor Leste in any negotiations relating to the
> establishment of an asylum seeker processing centre in Timor Leste.
> JSMP makes this statement in response to Gillard’s announcement on
> Tuesday, after consultation with President Ramos Horta, that
> Australia plans to send Australia-bound asylum seekers to Timor Leste
> for processing.
> According to Luis de Oliveira Sampaio, Executive Director of
> JSMP ,‘It is clearly stated in article 115 of the Constitution that
> the power to implement the general policy for this country rests with
> the Government, after approval by the Parliament. It does not rest
> with the President’.
> Luis de Oliveira Sampaio added that ‘While the President of the
> Republic possesses some minor powers with respect to foreign
> relations, these are largely symbolic. He is not authorised to engage
> in general negotiations about foreign relations and general policy
> without consulting the Government or National Parliament.’
> JSMP believes that it is particularly important for foreign
> governments to respect constitutional allocations of power in Timor
> Leste since Timor Leste’s institutions are very young and there is a
> history of leaders acting outside the authority granted to them by
> law.
> JSMP also believes that any proposal to process asylum seekers in
> Timor Leste should not be accepted without careful consideration of
> the impact that this would have on the rule of law in Timor Leste and
> the justice system, which at present is still weak and in the process
> of development.
> JSMP is concerned that should a processing centre be established,
> Timor Leste may have difficulty complying with its own obligations as
> a signatory to the Refugee Convention.
> For more information please contact:
> Luis de Oliveira Sampaio
> Executive Director JSMP
> Email: luis@jsmp.minihub.org
> Landline: 3323883
> ==============================
> Komunikadu Imprensa
> Edisaun : 8 Jullu 2010
> JSMP Rekomenda ba Primeiru Minístru Australia atu respeita ba
> Konstituisaun Timor Léste
> JSMP rekomenda ba Primeiru Minístru Australia, Julia Gillard, atu
> respeita ba Konstituisaun Timor Léste wainhira halo negosiasaun
> relasionadu ho asuntu refere ba estabelesimentu sentru iha Timor
> Léste ba ema ne’ebé buka aziliu. JSMP hasai estetmentu ne’e hanesan
> resposta ida ba anunsiu husi PM Gillard iha Tersa Feira liu bá,
> depois halo konsultasaun ho Prezidente Jose Manuel Ramos Horta, katak
> Australia iha planu atu haruka ema ne’ebé buka aziliu iha Australia
> ba Timor Léste hodi halo prosesa legal ba sira. Tuir Luis de Oliveira
> Sampaio, Direitór Ezekutivu JSMP katak, “konabá ne’e klaru iha Artigu
> 115 Konstituisaun Repúblika katak poder atu hala’o politika geral ba
> nasaun nian iha governu nia liman, wainhira hetan aprovasaun husi
> Parlamentu Nasional, la’os iha Prezidente nia liman”. Luis de
> Oliveira Sampaio akresenta tan katak “nune’é Prezidente Repúblika
> iha poder ne’ebé ki’ik relasionadu ho relasaun estrangeiru, poder
> ne’e maior parte simbóliku deit. Nia sei la hetan lisensa atu bele
> involve iha negosiasaun jeral konabá relasaun ho estrangeiru no
> polítika jeral sen iha konsultasaun ho Governu ka Parlamentu
> Nasional”. JSMP hanoin katak importante tebes ba governu iha rai
> seluk atu bele respeita ba kolokasaun poder ne’ebé define ona iha
> Konstitusaun Timor Léste, tanbá orgaun sira iha Timor Léste sei nurak
> no iha istoria la diak tanbá iha funsionariu ka ofisial públiku halo
> aksaun sai husi ninia poder ne’ebé define ona ba sira iha Lei ne’ebé
> vigora ona. JSMP mos fiar katak proposta atu hari’i sentru ba ema
> ne’ebé buka ba aziliu iha Timor léste, governu la bele aseita sé la
> konsidera impaktu proposta ne’e ba sistema judisiariu iha Timor
> léste, ne’ebé oras ne’e dau-daun sei frazil no iha prosesu
> dezenvolvimentu nia laran. JSMP lamenta katak sentru aziliu wainhira
> deside ona, Timor Léste bele hetan difikuldades atu bele kumpri
> ninia dever rasik hanesan estadu ne’ebé ratifika ona konabá Kovensaun
> ba Refugiadus ninian.
> Atu hetan informasaun kle’an favor kontaktu:
> Luis de Oliveira Sampaio
> Direitór Ezekutivu JSMP
> Email: luis@jsmp.minihub.org
> Landline: 3323883
> ================================================================
> This article was sent to you by the Judicial System Monitoring
> Programme (JSMP). Through the provision of independent legal
> analysis, court monitoring and community outreach activities JSMP
> aims to contribute to and evaluate the ongoing process of building a
> strong and sustainable justice system in Timor Leste. Visit our
> website at http://www.jsmp.minihub.org
> JSMP does not guarantee the content or endorse the views contained in
> articles distributed the list other than in respect of those
> publications prepared by JSMP itself
> To subscribe send a blank email to:
> list-subscribe@jsmp.minihub.org (Daily News and JSMP Publications)
> jsmpreports-subscribe@jsmp.minihub.org (JSMP Reports)
> justiceupdate-subscribe@jsmp.minihub.org (JSMP Justice Updates)
> media-subscribe@jsmp.minihub.org (JSMP Press Releases
> For more information, please refer to our website:
> Se ita boot preciza informasaun tan, favor ida haree JSMP nia website:

> http://www.jsmp.minihub.org

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