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Peters welcomes UN report on Timor

Rt Hon Winston Peters
Minister of Foreign Affairs


17 August 2006
Media statement

Peters welcomes UN report on Timor

Foreign Minister Winston Peters is welcoming the UN Secretary General's report on Timor-Leste as a sound blueprint for the UN’s future work there.

“The Secretary General's report highlights the enormous challenges facing Timor-Leste, and calls for a significantly-expanded Mission," Mr Peters said.

"While some aspects of the report require further discussion, New Zealand wholeheartedly endorses its emphasis on a sustained commitment and a coordinated approach, and we are currently looking at how we can best make a contribution.

“New Zealand supports the call for a ‘compact’ between Timor-Leste and the international community to ensure coordination in aid and recovery efforts. The best possible use of all available resources must be made to lay strong foundations for Timor's future economic growth and development.

“Outbreaks of violence in Timor-Leste are still possible, and international assistance will be required for some time to guarantee the safety of the Timorese people. The report calls for a comprehensive review of the security sector, including reform of both defence and police. Resolving these issues will be one of the keys to ensuring Timor-Leste's future stability.

“The report also proposes a substantial UN policing component and we are concerned it may be too ambitious. The UN will have a short-term role in frontline policing, but we hope it will be able to move quickly to working with the Timorese Police, helping with its reform and recovery.

"Military support for the new mission is still under discussion, and from New Zealand's perspective it is important that any military presence enjoys broad based support and international legitimacy.

“The international community has shown it is willing to help Timor-Leste move forward, but it is equally important that the Timorese leadership now takes responsibility for the future of its nation, and works together in a united fashion to regain the confidence of its people," Mr Peters said.

ENDS

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