Agreement Between the Republic of Indonesia and the Portuguese Republic on the Question of East Timor

Country/entity
Indonesia
Portugal
(East Timor)
Region
Cross-regional
Agreement name
Agreement Between the Republic of Indonesia and the Portuguese Republic on the Question of East Timor
Date
05/05/1999
Agreement status
Multiparty signed/agreed
Agreement/conflict level
Interstate/intrastate conflict(s) (East Timor Conflict (1975 - 1999)
Following the Portugal’s decolonization of East Timor in 1975, the state briefly declared independence before it was occupied by Indonesia a month later. Insurgent movements including the Revolutionary Front for an Independent East Timor (FRETILIN) fighting the Portuguese, continued their fight against the Indonesian Army. Human rights abuses and massacres were committed by both sides. By the early 1990s, as armed resistance decreased and the communist threat dissipated, the central Indonesian government issued a number of policies to open East Timor economically and politically. As a result, a resistance movements became more outspoken and demonstrations increased. Violence intensified after November 1991, when the Indonesian Army opened fire on protesters. International condemnation of the Suharto’s regime was widespread, but due to the fear of destabilizing Indonesia’s unity, it was not until the fall of Suharto in 1998 after the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis that East Timor’s secession became a possibility.

In 1999, an independence referendum was held with 78% rejecting East Timor’s positions as an autonomous territory within Indonesia. Violence broke out following the results and after a delay a UN-backed Australian peacekeeping force was deployed. The Indonesian Government accepted the result in October of that year and as a result the laws legalizing East Timor’s annexation were repealed, leading to East Timor’s independence in 2002.

East Timor Conflict (1975 - 1999) )
Stage
Framework/substantive - partial (Core issue)
Conflict nature
Government/territory
Peace process
63: East Timor-Indonesia peace process
Parties
Government of Indonesia; Government of Portugal
Third parties
United Nations: Kofi Annan- witness and signatory
Description
Parties agreed to request that a UN mission carry out a referendum on autonomy for the East Timorese. The Indonesian Government agreed to maintain peace and security to ensure the referendum was carried out fairly and peacefully and to take the necessary constitutional measures if the result of the referendum was positive. If the proposed framework for autonomy was not accepted by the people, the Indonesian Government undertook to take the constitutional steps necessary to terminate its links with East Timor and to make arrangements for the transfer of authority to the UN and for the transition to independence. An Annex outlined the constitutional framework for autonomy with regard to respective areas of competence; East Timorese identity, residence and immigration; powers and institutions of SARET (Special Autonomous Region of East Timor); promotion and protection of human rights; relationship between central Government and Government of the SARET; relations between SARET and other entities; role of UN; a Basic Law for SARET and transitional provisions. Agreement on the framework for deciding future constitutional status of East Timor; major UN role

Agreement document
ID TL_990505_AgreementOnEastTimor.pdf

Main category
Page 17, Appendix: A constitutional Framework for a Special Autonomy for East Timor, Part Four: Promotion and Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, Article 46
[...]
p. the right of women to full and equal participation in political, civil, economic, social, and cultural life;
[...]

Women, girls and gender

Participation
Effective participation
Page 20, Appendix: A constitutional Framework for a Special Autonomy for East Timor, Part Four: Promotion and Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, Article 46
[...]
p. the right of women to full and equal participation in political, civil, economic, social, and cultural life;
[...]
Equality
No specific mention.
Particular groups of women
No specific mention.
International law
International human rights standards
Page 20, Appendix: A constitutional Framework for a Special Autonomy for East Timor, Part Four: Promotion and Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, Article 46
[...]
p. the right of women to full and equal participation in political, civil, economic, social, and cultural life;
[...]
New institutions
No specific mention.
Violence against women
No specific mention.
Transitional justice
No specific mention.
Institutional reform
Constitution-making/reform
Page 20, Appendix: A constitutional Framework for a Special Autonomy for East Timor, Part Four: Promotion and Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, Article 46 [...] p. the right of women to full and equal participation in political, civil, economic, social, and cultural life;
Development
No specific mention.
Implementation
No specific mention.
Other
No specific mention.

The University of Edinburgh