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home / archives / 1991 / 15th November

The Santa Cruz Massacre.

On November 12, 1991 more than 271 East Timorese were killed after Indonesian troops fired upon a peaceful march to Santa Cruz cemetery. An equal number of people disappeared and are now believed dead. The massacre was filmed by international journalists, and the resulting coverage resulted in widespread condemnation of the Indonesian occcupation.

In Australia, November 11th is Remembrance Day in honour of the war dead. Bob Hawke was Prime Minister in 1991, Gough Whitlam's words echo both his advice to his followers on November 11th, 1975, when the Whitlam Government was dismissed and also the apparent mood of the times when East Timor was orginally occupied shortly after.