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3. 4.

98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 102/95

− indirectly: by prioritising support for displaced groups in areas covered by Community-financed rural
development projects in Colombia.

(1) OJ L 68, 8.3.1997.

(98/C 102/137) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2698/97


by Maartje van Putten (PSE) to the Commission
(1 September 1997)

Subject: Demonstrators in Papua New Guinea

1. a) Is the Commission aware that criminal proceedings are currently under way in Papua New Guinea
(PNG) against Jonathan O’ata, John Kawowo, Powes Parkop and John Napu who had played a leading
role in March 1997 in organizing demonstrations against the deployment of mercenaries by the PNG
authorities in Bougainville?

1. b) If so, is it monitoring these proceedings?

2. Does the Commission agree with Amnesty International that if these men are found guilty and imprisoned
they should be regarded as political prisoners and that this would damage the relatively open political
climate in Papua New Guinea?

3. What opportunities does the Commission see in its contacts with the PNG authorities for calling for
proceedings which respect human rights and political freedoms?

Answer given by Mr Pinheiro on behalf of the Commission


(7 October 1997)

The Commission has followed closely the issue of the accusations against Jonathan O’ata, John Kawowo, Powes
Parkop and John Napu.

After the elections in June, a new government was formed on 29 July 1997 and it immediately became clear that
this new government sought a national reconciliation on issues related to the Sandline mercenaries crisis.

However, the four above named appeared in court on 29 August 1997 on charges of unlawful assembly. The
prosecution appeared not to have their case ready and requested the magistrate to adjourn it, without proposing a
date. This was not accepted by the defence and in the end the charges were dropped. The case is therefore to be
considered closed.

(98/C 102/138) WRITTEN QUESTION P-2702/97


by Konstantinos Hatzidakis (PPE) to the Commission
(28 July 1997)

Subject: Extremely low take-up of funds from the CSF for Greece for the region of Eastern Macedonia and
Thrace

According to reports in the Greek press, the take-up rate of funds under the CSF for the Greek region of Eastern
Macedonia and Thrace is extremely low. To date, i.e. over three years since the CSF for Greece came into
operation, the take-up rate for the Regional Operational Programme (ROP) for Eastern Macedonia and Thrace −