Britain demands justice over journalist killings

Britain is to ask the Australian government whether it intends to bring to justice the men responsible for killing two British journalists 33 years ago.

Brian Peters and Malcolm Rennie, both British citizens, were killed to stop them reporting that East Tilmor had been invaded by Indonesian troops during a bloody civil war in 1975.

Peters and Rennie were working for the late Kerry Packeris’ Australian Channel Nine network when they met their deaths in the East Timorese border town of Bailbo.

Three other journalists, Greg Shackleton, Tony Stewart and Gary Cunningham, working for the rival Channel Seven network, were killed at the same time.

Last November the coroner in New South Wales, Dorelle Pinch, found that all five were killed deliberately by Indonesian troops to cover up the invasion.

She has passed her findings to the Australian Attorney-General who has the authority to launch prosecutions.

Foreign Office minister Meg Munn has told MPs: ‘I plan to ask the Australian authorities at a suitable opportunity how they plan to respond to the inquest’s recommendations.”

Ms Munn, however, rejected a plea from Liberal Democrat MP Don Foster, when he raised the issue in the Commons on 27 February, for the UK Government to act through Interpol to issue warrants to the two surviving Indonesians named by the coroner at the inquest.

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