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EU Ends Peace Monitoring Program in Aceh  Tapol
 May 28, 2012 08:21 PDT 

From joyo

The Jakarta Post
Friday, May 25, 2012

EU Ends Peace Monitoring Program in Aceh

Hotli Simanjuntak, The Jakarta Post, Banda Aceh

The European Union (EU) says that it will continue to support
forestry, environmental, climate-change and economic-development
programs in Aceh after its seven-year mission to monitor peace in the
province ends in June.

“This is the end of the peace-support program, but we’ll still be
going on with forestry and reconstruction,” Giovanni Serritella, the
EU’s representative in Aceh, said in a ceremony in Banda Aceh on

“We will formally close our office, but will continue to have an
active interest in outreach programs in Aceh. We will still keep the
dialogue open,” Serritella said.

Serritella made his comments at a ceremony held at the Hotel Hermes
Palace, attended by Aceh Governor-elect Zaini Abdullah, Aceh secretary
Teuku Setiabudi and former Aceh Reintegration Body chief Yusni Sabi,
among others. The EU has also run capacity-building programs for the
Aceh Police to support forest preservation and good governance.

The EU-sponsored peace agreement between the government and the
separatist Free Aceh Movement (GAM) ended decades of violence in 2005.

The agreement was brokered by the Crisis Management Initiative (CMI)
under former Finnish president Martti Ahtisaari, who canceled a
planned visit to Aceh for the ceremony.

Serritella said that Aceh had made significant progress toward peace,
which was a good sign for the EU to end its mission.

“Today we mark the enduring relationship between the EU and the people
of Aceh, and the personal and professional endeavors of many people in
Aceh, Jakarta and the wider world that have contributed to a more
stable and prosperous future for this province,” he said.

CMI representative Bernhard May also lauded Aceh’s “stable” peace and
said that a mediating third party was no longer needed, although the
EU would continue to monitor developments in the area.

Serrirella said that the EU would shift its focus to environment,
climate-change and economic-
development programs in Aceh.

Forestry programs would also remain on the EU’s agenda, as Aceh’s and
Papua’s forests had to be preserved as the “world’s lungs”.

“A good example is our forthcoming support of sustainable-forestry and
climate-change programs in Aceh. The EU will back sustainable forestry
practices in Aceh and work with all stakeholders to help balance the
needs of development and environmental preservation. We look forward
to continue working with the incoming administration,” he said.

Amiruddin Usman from the Office of the Coordinating Political, Legal
and Security Affairs Minister, extended his gratitude to the EU for
its assistance in Aceh development.

“We sincerely thank the EU for their active involvement in reaching
peace in Aceh. The peace process has not been easy to reach, but
thanks to outside participation, particularly from the EU, peace has
prevailed,” Amiruddin said.

EU Programs in Aceh

January 2005
European Union (EU) pledged a ¤207 million reconstruction package to
support long-term reconstruction of tsunami-stricken areas in

July 2005
The EU led a peace-monitoring mission in Aceh.

October 2005
The EU opened ‘Europe House’ in Banda Aceh to coordinate
implementation of EU-funded rehabilitation and reconstruction projects
in tsunami-stricken areas.

EU contributes ¤14 million to support the peace process in Aceh
(98.52% of total).

EU contributes ¤117 million to Multi-Donor Trust Fund for Aceh and
North Sumatra (100% of total).
Various sources

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