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East Timor nuns massacre trial to begin in July

The trial for the massacres committed in 1999 in the district of Los Palos will formally begin on 3 July in Dili.

The trial date has been confirmed by UNTAET, the UN transitional administration in East Timor. Preliminary hearings in the case already started in February.

Charges have been filed against 10 East Timorese anti-independence militias and one Indonesian officer of the special forces "Kopassus". The Indonesian officer and one of the militiamen are still at large, while the others are all detained in Dili.

The atrocities include the murders of 69-year-old Canossian Sister Ermina Cazzaniga, Superior in Manatuto, 48-year-old Canossian Sister Celeste De Carvalho Pinto, Superior of the community of Baucau, as well as two deacons and a number of laymen, all killed on 25 September 1999 near Los Palos on the extreme eastern tip of East Timor.