Thursday, 8 May 2008

Hair Raising

I have just received the following message. It is addressed to NGO's, which obviously I am not, but I managed to get a copy anyway. I've left out any identifying details, like names and email addresses for obvious reasons.
The whole thing would be quite funny if it wasn't quite so bloody alarming:

Date: Thu, 8 May 2008 11:52:23 +0700
From: "**** ********”
Subject: Of Concern

Joint NGO Safety Office
Location: Zumalai
Time/Date: 7 May 2008
Report Status: Reported by UN Sources
Information: It was reported that an F-FDTL (Joint Command) delegation met with the community in Zumalai, Cova Lima District. They were reported to have advised the community of the following:

1. Support the Joint Command operations.
2. Everyone should hand in any lethal weapons, including home-made weapons, prior to

10 May.
3. All long-haired men must get a haircut.

The third point is cause for some concern. I have been unable to confirm whether this is an official directive from Joint Command, although I sincerely doubt it.
There is no legal or other basis to support such directives, which are probably being imposed by individuals rather than as an official approach to community relations sanctioned by the JC.
Nevertheless, these directives have been issued before by members of the
F-FDTL, in a number of instances to INGO staff in Bobonaro. In one case, the directive was issued with a threat to cut the person's hair if he did not do it himself.NGOs are encouraged to report this and other abuses of authority so that they can be brought to the attention of the relevant authorities.
NGOs are also cautioned that their staff may be subjected to directions by individual members of the security forces that may impinge on their civil liberties. This may happen at any time, in any location. This office has seen an increase in the reporting of such incidents over the past month in particular.

DisclaimerThe Joint NGO Safety Office (JSO) exists to provide dedicated security service to the NGO community;
As a free service JSO and its donors or partners, accept no liability whatsoever for claims as may result from the provisions or utilizations of these free services;
Whilst every effort is made to verify data, JSO cannot guarantee the accuracy or information provided; NGOs are reminded that they remain responsible for their respective organizations security management.

Comments anyone?



Warren said...

During the Indonesian occupation, men growing their hair long was a sign of resistance. One Timorese friend of mine told me that he had cut off his very long hair after the 1999 ballot as the occupation had ended and he subsequently sported very short hair. It is interesting to note the long-hair phenomena is being interpreted by some lunatics in authority now in East Timor as a similar sign of resistance to what some perceive is an oppressive and unjust regime.

Best regards,


Anonymous said...

On a lighter side, sounds like the brothers of my old all boys priory..

1. You will support us
2. You will empty your lockers of weapons, drugs....
3. You will cut your hair to no longer than 2in above shoulder.

Knackers said...

Very Tabiban to regulate a blokes Hirstuteness?

Anonymous said...

Looks like I got out in the nick of time!
What if you tie it up in a bun?