Indonesian authorities deport U.S. journalist

September 20, 1999– Allan Nairn, the American journalist detained by Indonesian authorities on September 14, was deported from Indonesia to Singapore today. He flew out from Bali, having been flown from West Timor to Bali on Sunday.

Nairn told Associated Press and Agence France Presse reporters in Singapore that he believed Indonesian armed forces chief General Wiranto was responsible for the militia killings in East Timor. Nairn added that he had witnessed Aitarak militiamen living and working at an Indonesian immigration facility in Kupang, West Timor, where he was detained for entering Indonesia without the correct visa.

Nairn is a freelance journalist who filed regular reports from East Timor for the American news organizations The Nation, a weekly political magazine, and Pacifica Radio’s current affairs program “Democracy Now!” He was detained by Indonesian military officers in Dili, the capital of East Timor, at around 5:30 a.m. local time on September 14. He was then interrogated by police and military officers, including Maj. Gen. Kiki Syahnakri, head of the Indonesian military operation in East Timor.

On Friday, September 17, Indonesian officials threatened to prosecute Nairn on two charges of violating immigration laws. Each charge carried a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment.

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