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  • SAGU
    MASOHI RESIDENTS IN DIRE CONDITION Ambon, 2 January 2000 One of the victims of Masohi (who hailed from Tual island in the southeastern parts of the Maluku
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 2, 2000
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      Ambon, 2 January 2000

      One of the victims of Masohi (who hailed from Tual island in the
      southeastern parts of the Maluku archipelago), whose house had been burned
      down, told the SAGU team about the conflict in Masohi, the (subdistrict)
      capital of Ceram island.

      The conflict in Masohi from 31st December 1999 to 1st January 2000 started
      by the sudden attack of Moslem masses, who reportedly came from Pelau and
      Kailolo villages. Shouting "Allahuakbar" (God is Great), the masses
      attacked and burned down the houses of Christians and Catholics in the town
      of Masohi.

      On January 1 2000 the mass burning of houses of Christian also took place
      in Letwaru village, on the outskirts of Masohi. It has been recorded that 5
      church buildings were set on fire in Letwaru, Kampung Timur (eastern
      village) and Masohi. Preliminary reports show 4 people of have died from
      gunshot wounds and an unidentified number sustained injuries. Thus the town
      centre of Masohi is now in the hands of the Moslems and
      Christians/Catholics have escaped outside the town or to three refugee
      centres, namely the military headquarters, the police headquarters and the
      local industrial training centre.  With the exception of the last refugee
      concentration, the earlier two mentioned has accommodated Moslems as well
      as Christians.

      It also has been reported that during two days the Moslems succeeded in
      chasing Christian residents away from Masohi town without any significant
      resistance on the part of the Christians. The attackers had also been
      assisted by residents of other villages on Ceram island, namely Sepu,
      Tomilon and Rita (all Moslem villages).

      The areas in Masohi town where Christian houses have been torched are among
      others, Letwaru, Kampung Timur, Kampung Sugiarto-keluarahan Amaelo, and
      Kampung Ampera RT-1 and RT-2. It has also been reported that on their way
      out of Masohi town, the Christians succeeded in burning down the (Moslem)
      Muhammadiyah senior high school building.

      As a result of the conflict, the hospital in Masohi is no more functioning,
      because its medical staff have left. The only makeshift hospital now is at
      the refugee centre of the industriul traning centre. Victims of the
      conflict had to be operated on in that location, because some of the
      refugees happened to be medical doctors, on assignment from other
      provinces. Because of lack of medicines and other facilities, the victims
      could not be treated in a humanly manner, and some died for lack of blood
      and medicine. No human relief is forthcoming, and until 11 pm there were no
      signs that medical help from the government or the military was forthcoming
      to restore the situation in Masohi. To this moment nothing is being done as
      yet to help the refugees of Masohi and the victims of the conflict.
      Solidaritas Anak Negeri Maluku
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