Forced labour

Wednesday, September 18, 1991

Forced labour

While people are being transmigrated to East Timor, several hundred young East Timorese workers have been brought to Java with promises of training and good jobs, but found themselves working in factories under appalling conditions. Police were sent after those who tried to leave these jobs.

On August 30 a delegation of these young workers presented a petition signed by 65 of their group to Indonesia's House of Representatives, demanding that their original contracts be honoured.

Despite a commitment by parliament that they would not be persecuted, one of the petitioners, Luis Maria Lopes, was arrested shortly afterwards. A few days later he was seen while still under arrest, the left side of his face blackened, apparently by beating. At last report he was still under arrest.

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