|Subject: NST: 125-man mission for Timor
New Straits Times » National
125-man mission for Timor Leste Jaspal Singh
IPOH, July 26: Malaysia will be sending a 125-member riot-control management mission to Timor Leste next month to assist the United Nations’ peacekeeping efforts in the newly-independent nation.
The mission, consisting of five senior officers and 120 rank-and-file staff, will remain in Timor Leste for a year.
Bukit Aman director of management Commissioner Datuk Kamaruddin Mohd Ali said the mission's main responsibility would be to assist in maintaining peace and ensuring smooth administration of the country.
He said the mission was a first for Malaysia involving riot-control management.
"Our team will be replacing the 125-member mission from Jordan which had been serving in the same capacity in Timor Leste," he said after attending the completion of intensive training for members of the Timor Leste mission in Sungai Senam here today.
The mission, to be known as the International Formed Unit, comprises personnel from the Federal Reserve Unit, General Operations Force and former FRU staff.
Members from FRU and GOF units in Kuala Lumpur, Seremban, Kuala Terengganu, Penang, Ipoh and Johor Baru underwent training in two phases. They took part in practical training, attended lectures and participated in discussions.
Kamaruddin said the riot-control management mission would be stationed in Dili, the capital of Timor Leste.
He said a team of five UN officials — two from New York and three from Timor Leste — inspected the intensive training programme undertaken by the mission members and found that the preparation was more than satisfactory to handle the situation in that country.
The mission will also bring along equipment, vehicles and weapons to be used in riot control.
Currently, there are 33 Malaysian police officers in Timor Leste working in various sections such as investigation, traffic, security and recruitment.
They were part of the first Malaysian police mission, comprising 85 officers, which was sent to Timor Leste in June 1999.