East Timor: The Courts-Martial

Between May 29 and June 6, 1992, nine soldiers and one policeman were tried by military or police courts in Bali for their role in the massacre in East Timor on November 12, 1991 when the Indonesian army opened fire on a crowd of unarmed demonstrators. The trials were open to diplomatic observers and the press; the sentences were light, ranging from eight to eighteen months. The courts-martial do not portray the Indonesian army in a favorable light, but neither do they pierce the secrecy surrounding how the shooting started or what happened to the bodies of those killed.