Subject: LUSA: UN sets up one-year political mission to replace its peacekeepers

East Timor: UN sets up one-year political mission to replace its peacekeepers

United Nations, April 28 (Lusa) - The United Nations Security Council decided Thursday to create a 12-month follow-on political mission in East Timor to replace the UN's current support mission after is scheduled pullout on May 20.

The creation of UNOTIL (United Nations Office in East Timor) was unanimously approved by all 15 members of the Security Council and the new mission will remain in Timor until May 20, 2006.

UNOTIL will support development of police border patrols and other critical state institution and will consist of 35 civilian advisers, 40 police advisers and an additional 35 advisers (10 of whom may be military advisers) to support the development of Timor's border police.

Up to 10 human rights officers will also serve in UNOTIL to give the mission a total of 85 personnel.

The outgoing UNMISET mission has over 600 personnel, including "blue beret" troops, military observers and civilian police.

Tough negotiations took place in the UN Security Council earlier this year on the form and scale of UNMISET's replacement, with the United States opposing Secretary-General Kofi Annan's proposals for an extended but reduced mission with military, police and civilian components.

TM/CJB.

Lusa

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