Subject: UNOTIL Daily Media Review 26 - 28 Aug 2006

UNOTIL Daily Media Review

Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Saturday 26 Aug, Monday 28 Aug 2006

National Media Reports

New Mission Starts With Traffic Campaign

The New Expanded United Nations mission in Timor-Leste began with a community awareness education campaign, focusing on traffic rules and regulations for safety and security. United Nations police currently in the country handed out leaflets to motorists at various locations in Dili. A motorist by the name of Amandio dos Reis said that the distribution of information was important in reminding the motorists to follow the rules, as the traffic in Dili had been in disarray following the recent conflict. (DN)

It’ll Be Another Month Before UN Police Arrives: Rmos-Horta (TPp1)

Prime Minister Ramos-Horta said that although the UN approved the new mission for Timor-Leste on Friday, it would take another month before the 1600 police officers arrived in the country, adding that all nations supported the Security Council’s decision to send the police force. In relation to the peace keeping forces, the Minister said that the Security Council would make that decision in the month of October. Ramos-Horta stressed that the Timor-Leste government was prepared and ready to work with the UN since Timor-Leste was the one requesting the UN to send its forces in order to assist in the reorganization of police and the F-FDTL. He further added that the government will try and work closely with the United Nations and with all the nations that want to help the country, but the problem of Timor-Leste has to be resolved by all the Timorese people through dialogue and reconciliation not only at the level of the leaders but also that of the youth. (TP, STL)

Police Detained 62 People in Comoro

In an early Saturday morning operation, the international forces detained 62 people including the head of the gang who had attacked a police officer a week earlier. The operation lead by the Australian command with the support of the Portuguese Guarda da Republica (GNR), and the Malaysians, caught the residents of Comoro by surprise and confiscated various items used by youths during violent attacks.

In a separate article, there were reports of assaults in some areas of Dili especially in Becora area. An IDP in Becora parish said many people have tried to go back to their homes but had to return to the parish due to threats made by unknown people in their area. (TP)

UN Will Attend To Security Demands: SRSG Hasegawa

During his visit to the districts of Bobonaro and Suai, SRSG Sukehiro Hasegawa told the government officials and PNTL officers that the UN would guarantee the security demands through the increased presence of police with the new mission. SRSG Hasegawa said that a third of the police incorporated in the new mission will be stationed at the districts and would be in charge of the executive policing especially in Dili, but stressed that they would work together with the PNTL officers to help develop their capacity in community policing. In Maliana a senior PNTL officer presented some of the difficulties faced by the institution such as lack generators, transport and computers, and also suggested reactivation of the solar system to help with running water.

The concerns raised in Covalima by government officials were the improvement of security, transport, electricity and the need for better communications including radio and television. The officials also feel that the political situation has to be resolved but believe that the reconciliation must start with the national leaders. The Head of UNOTIL said that he will present to the Prime Minister and the President of the Republic their concerns and through the UN agencies in Timor-Leste would try to find the resources contributed by the donor countries, but the most important thing was for the government officials in the districts to be responsible and guarantee that the funds allocated in the national budget to the district must be carefully spent so as to benefit the people, reported STL Monday.

Diario Nacional reported that the visit of the SRSG to the two districts was to listen to the concerns and observe the conditions of the population at the base level in terms of security and politics. According to DN, during the meeting in Maliana, the Administrator of Balibo, Lucia Fina informed that some of the sub-villages had resumed illegal trading with West Timor and vice-versa. Also a few people had taken some young women to Atambua in order to sell them to Malaysia, adding that to-date these girls have yet to return. The Administrator of Bobonaro, Beatriz Martins said that the government had not been functional since May 5 due to the commission’s boycott as there were allegations of unknown groups terrorizing the population, so the leaders had to flee and take refuge in Dili. (STL, DN)

There will be no tolerance for any companies that violate law in East Timor: Zito

In relation to the case of Makikit Hardware Company that sacked several East Timorese workers during the ET crisis, the Confederation of the Syndicate (trade union) in East Timor through Zito da Costa said it will not tolerate any companies that violate the law that existed in East Timor particularly the labor law. According to Zito based on the labor law article 36 said that any company can sack its employees but should be based on the fundamental reasons stated in the East Timor law.

In order to execute the budget well, government should modify the Organic Law: Tilman

The president of the Commission C, Manuel Tilman told the new decree law is too centralized and in order to execute the current budget successfully, the government should modify the organic law. (TP)

International Media Reports

U.S. Naval Hospital Ship, USNS Mercy, arrives in Timor-Leste

August 27, 2006

DILI - The U.S. Naval hospital ship USNS Mercy arrived off the coast of Dili today to provide humanitarian and civic assistance to the people of Timor-Leste. This mission reflects longstanding ties between the United States and Timor-Leste, as well as our continued commitment to work together to address mutual problems and concerns.

The Mercy’s mission is being carried out in conjunction with nongovernmental organizations, and in close coordination and partnership with local medical care professionals. Volunteers from Aloha Medical Mission of Hawaii, Project Hope and the University of California at San Diego Pre-Dental Society are partnering with Mercy, as are a contingent of medical specialists from Malaysia, Canada and India. Additionally, the crew on board Mercy is partnering with Government of Timor-Leste and the medical and humanitarian assistance community ashore to provide assistance to the people of Timor-Leste. Specifically, in addition to the Timor-Leste Ministry of Health, close partnerships have already been formed with the staff of the National Hospital and the Timor-Leste Medical Association in collaboration with the Mercy visit.

For this deployment, Mercy has been configured with special medical equipment and a robust multi-specialized medical team of uniformed and civilian health care providers to provide a range of services ashore as well as on board the ship. It will provide a broad range of assistance to include specialized surgical procedures, general medical and dental support, and training opportunities to host nation health care providers. In addition, the 894-foot-long ship has embarked a small team of Sailors from the Naval Construction Force (Seabees) to perform infrastructure repairs and minor construction projects to improve basic health and living conditions. U.S. Navy Show Band is also deployed aboard the ship, and will be performing in select locations in Dili.

USNS Mercy is uniquely capable of supporting medical and humanitarian assistance needs and can rapidly respond to a range of situations on short notice. Last year, Mercy deployed in response to the December 2004 tsunami that struck Southeast Asia. That deployment resulted in the treatment of thousands of patients in Indonesia, Timor-Leste and Papua New Guinea. Earlier in this deployment, during visits to Zamboanga, Jolo and Tawi-Tawi in the Philippines, Chittagong, Bangladesh, and Simeulue Island, Nias Island, Banda Aceh, Tarakan and Kupang, Indonesia, the Mercy medical staff treated numerous patients and performed a wide variety of medical procedures including surgeries, distribution of eyeglasses and performance of dental procedures. For further information, please contact U.S. Pacific Fleet Public Affairs at 1(808) 471-3769, or the Press Office of the U.S. Embassy in Dili at (670) 332-4684 x2034 or (670) 723-1323 (US Embassy Press Release)

Federal police set for boost

26 August 2006

THE ranks of the Australian Federal Police will be significantly bolstered amid fears of increased regional strife. The call-up follows an announcement that the Federal Government had committed $10 billion to create two new army battalions to deal with an anticipated increase in the sort of unrest that recently flared up in the Solomon Islands and East Timor. “The Government is doing this because we believe that the need for international deployment by the AFP will in all likelihood increase in our region over the years ahead,” Prime Minister John Howard said. “We need not only a military capability but we also need a police capability. “The example very recently of East Timor showed a clear demarcation between the military need in the very early stages and then the policing stabilisation needs after the initial work of the military.” Mr Howard said that the AFP’s International Deployment Group would be increased by 422 personnel. That would take the total to 1200, making it the single largest increase since the agency was created in 1979. The move would cost $493 million over the next five years. The additional resources would allow for the establishment of a 150-strong operational response group that would be ready to respond at short notice and undertake stabilisation operations, Mr Howard said. Labor said any move to boost the ranks of the AFP should not be at the expense of state police forces. Opposition justice and customs spokesman senator Joe Ludwig said he agreed with the Government’s move to expand the IDG. But he questioned how such a large rise could be achieved in a tight labour market. Senator Ludwig said the AFP already had a shortage of sworn officers and many past recruitment campaigns failed to deliver. He cautioned against “raiding” state police ranks to fill out the IDG’s capacity. (The Border Mail)

Like Brunei, E Timor Has Oil & Gas Too

26 August 2006 - By Ignatius Stephen

Bandar Seri Begawan - "WE want to be like you," she said. "One day". There was hope in her voice and admiration. She was indeed sincere. She was part of an East Timor delegation visiting Brunei. The group had called on other Asean capitals while on an invitational trip. The visitors were apparently midlevel civil servants. That was about a year ago. Brunei, they found, was something akin to them. It was the best fit a model to follow. The road to paradise for their much troubled nation along which to travel. "We have much in common," she said. "We are both small nations. And above all we have sizeable oil and gas reserves. We want to know how your country uses it for the good of the nation and the people, she added. "We see that everyone is happy and the country is beautiful and clean. It is so peaceful too." A fitting compliment indeed. Brunei like East Timor was not wealthy once upon a time. That is to say not too long ago. But it is now a shining light of stability, peace and prosperity. It did the right things and made the correct decisions. What then have we in common with East Timor, as the delegation member put it? Yes, some things perhaps. As far as it goes. East Timor, officially the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, is 5,376 square miles while Brunei covers 2,226 square miles. Both are, therefore, small. Its population at 1 million is more than double that of Brunei. East Timor has also promising oil and gas reserves. That is another similarity. The country is engaged in development with Australia of petroleum and natural gas resources in the waters southeast of Timor. The Greater Sunrise gas field in the Timor Sea is the largest petroleum resource in the country. On July 7, 2005, an agreement was signed under which both Australia and East Timor would set aside a dispute over maintenance boundary. Under this treaty East Timor would get 50 percent of the revenues, estimated at US$20 billion over the lifetime of the project from the Greater Sunrise development. -- Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin

National News Sources Timor Post (TP) Radio Timor-Leste (RTL) Suara Timor Lorosae (STL) Diario Tempo (DT) Diario Nacional Seminario Lia Foun (LF) Televisaun Timor-Leste [TVTL]

These Items Do Not Reflect the Position or Views of the United Nations. UNOTIL Public Information Office

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