Subject: Indonesia to tighten border security in lead up to East Timor election

Indonesia to tighten border security in lead up to East Timor election

The following report on tightened security along the Indonesia-East Timor border in the lead up to the East Timor elections was based on two unattributed reports taken from the 25 April online edition of Republika.

Republika: "UN: Indonesia-East Timor border security needs to be tightened in lead-up to elections"

This article reported on comments made by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan that security along the East Timor-Indonesia border be stepped up before East Timor's election in 2007. Speaking at the UN Security Council, Annan mentioned that extra patrols along the border would be necessary, particularly seeing that UN soldiers stationed along the border previously had been effective in reducing conflict. According to a report published by the UN Office in Timor Leste (UNOITL), around 26,000 East Timorese were currently living in East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), some of whom may have been involved in the 1999 unrest. Annan recommended that UNOITL's assignment in East Timor be extended, which East Timor's President Xanana Gusmao has accepted.

Republika: "TNI ready to secure territory along NTT-East Timor border"

This item reported reactions from TNI [Indonesian National Military Forces] to calls for tighter security along the border. Commander of Korem 161/Wirasakti, the military command in Kupang, Col Noch Bola stated that TNI personnel were ready to restore order along the border should it be required. He explained that at present there were enough personnel along the border, but neverthless, TNI personnel were on constant alert. TNI also threatened that it would wage guerrilla warfare if there was no other way out. "We don't want our territory to become a base for insurgents from East Timor," he said.

Source: Republika, Jakarta, in Indonesian 25 Apr 06

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