- July/August, 1991
This document was sourced from Pacific Peoples’ Partnership (PPP).
Titled, Colonizing East Timor: Indonesia and Australia’s Oil Drilling Plans, the article was written by Allan Nairn in the Petrochemical age section of the July/August 1991 issue of Multinational Monitor. The article argues that Australia is reaping rewards from Indonesia’s invasion of East Timor by extracting the oil of East Timor’s seabed through the Timor Gap Treaty. It signed the treaty with Indonesia in 1989. The article features a quote from Jose Ramos Horta that argues the hypocrisy of Australia as it concurrently joined a war against Iraq in the name of international law while saying that Indonesia was not precluded by international law from invading Timor. Next, the article presents the comments of Dick Woolcott, the Australian ambassador to Indonesia, on the Indonesian invasion of Timor. It then explains that oil company research in the early 1970s had estimated that the disputed waters between Australian and Timor could hold vast amounts of oil and natural gas. Finally, the article argues that the Timor Gap Treaty is the first international agreement that formally legitimizes the Indonesian annexation of Timor and presents Portugal’s challenge to Australia over the treaty in the World Court.
Pacific Peoples Partnership