Thirteen members of the Steering Committee for the Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation’s Selection Panel held its first formal meeting yesterday where it endorsed the decision.The Selection Panel has met with pro-autonomy groups in Kupang and Bali in Indonesia twice over the past month in a bid to fill a panel position with a pro-autonomy representative. The pro-autonomy groups have so far declined to fill a position, deferring a decision until they have had more time to confer with their supporters.The Selection Panel also decided to launch a public information campaign on 27 September to distribute leaflets, posters and other materials throughout East Timor, the West Timorese refugee camps and to the East Timorese diaspora.The public information campaign aims to solicit nominations for the five to seven national commission members, and the 25 to 30 posts of district commissioners.The Panel is scheduled to visit each of East Timor’s districts between 15 to 30 October, and has placed a 31 October deadline for the submission of nominations.The Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation will ultimately undertake two primary functions: it will establish a truth-seeking function and look into the pattern of human rights violations in East Timor committed within the context of the political conflicts between 1974-1999. The commission will also create a community reconciliation body to facilitate agreements between local communities and the perpetrators of non-serious crimes and non-criminal acts committed over the same period.

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