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McKinnon Concerned At Attack On UN In East Timor

30 June 1999

MEDIA STATEMENT

For Immediate Release

MCKINNON CONCERNED AT ATTACK ON UN IN EAST TIMOR

Foreign Minister Don McKinnon said he deplores the attack on a UN facility in East Timor today, but he hopes the growing UN presence in East Timor will deter further attacks.

"The UN presence in East Timor is still building up and I am hopeful that this will have a calming influence. But, unfortunately this incident shows that it is not possible to give guarantees for the safety of UN staff, including New Zealanders, because the situation remains volatile.

"Luckily, no New Zealanders were injured in this attack. We have Police and Defence Force personnel in East Timor, with election observers scheduled to also go to East Timor to monitor the ballot.

"New Zealand hopes that Indonesia will move quickly to ensure the safety of all people, both locals and UN personnel, currently on East Timor.

"We want to see a peaceful, fair ballot and all parties must work together to achieve that," Mr McKinnon said.

ENDS

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