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East Timor Appeal
Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand - Catholic Agency for Justice, Peace and Development
Caritas Launches Appeal for Neighbour in Crisis - East Timor Wednesday, 23 June 1999
In response to the present crisis in East Timor, Caritas is today launching a fundraising appeal to the New Zealand public. This will provide New Zealanders with a way of helping the people of East Timor during their time of urgent need.
Many know of the situation which faces East Timor, our close neighbour. The escalation of violence there is causing wide-spread trauma and suffering. Hundreds have died in the past few months. Even with the building presence of international monitors, people's lives are still being threatened, and taken, daily. Thousands have been forced from their homes, and homes have been destroyed. There are now about 44,000 East Timorese who are refugees in their own land. Many suffer torture or rape or have 'disappeared'. Clearly we have a Kosovo-type situation on our own doorstep.
Caritas Aotearoa is working with Caritas East Timor to provide assistance for the East Timorese. As the violence there is now very widespread, a high level of assistance is needed. With the support of the New Zealand public, Caritas can do more to help the people of East Timor.
Caritas East Timor is working to provide food, water, medical assistance, shelter and clothing for internally displaced people. Caritas in New Zealand and Australia together are providing personnel to assist with distribution of food, medical and other supplies, to give trauma counselling for victims of torture and violence, and to provide general support to the staff of Caritas East Timor who are working under difficult and dangerous circumstances.
Long terms needs will be; for ongoing counselling for victims of torture and violence; for the replacement of homes which have been destroyed; for agricultural and food production rehablilitation; for community education in civil and democratic processes; and for reconciliation work for people in East Timor.
Over the next few weeks Caritas will be running advertisements in New Zealand's major daily newspapers appealing for funds. You can send donations to; Caritas East Timor Appeal, Freepost 689, PO Box 12-193, Wellington 6038. Or you call the Caritas $20 Donation Line on 0900 4 11 11.
If you require further information, please contact : Anne Dickinson, Caritas National Director, tel (04) 496 1743; or Louise May, Caritas Research/Policy Analyst, tel (04) 496 1765.
Return to "East Timor - updates".