29 November 2008

East Timor Security Update 29 October - 20 November 2008

Source: Joint NGO Security Office and UNMIT - The overall security situation in Timor Leste has been calm during the reporting period. Dili has been generally quiet with few incidents of note. A fatal hit and run traffic accident involving a UN vehicle caused some concern but so far does not appear to have generated any hostility to the UN or to internationals more generally.

However, tensions have increased at Metinaro IDP camp. The districts have been mostly quiet although some issues remain in Beaco in Viqueque. There have been a number of relatively serious but one-off and unconnected incidents such as Martial Arts Group fighting and illegal checkpoints in a number of districts.

Additionally, the following are of note:

Categories 28 Oct – 5 Nov 5 – 11 Nov 11 - 19 Nov
Group Fighting 1 0 0
Assaults 32 45 44
Family Related Assault 13 9 14
Weapon Possession 0 1 0
Discharge Firearms 0 0 1
Illegal Checkpoint 0 2 0
Arson 0 1 0
Homicide 1 1 1
Public Disturbance 0 1 0
Disorderly Behaviour 13 8 9

These statistics represent only those incidents reported to the UN and UNPol over the reporting period.


• There were 68 recorded incidents across Timor Leste. This is higher than the last reporting period (60). UN Police (UNPol) made 120 arrests. It should be noted that the UN recently improved its ability to collect crime statistics so will see an increase in the figures which may not necessarily be reflective of a deterioration in the security situation.

• The second and final payment to the Petitioners began.

• Parliament passed a draft law on voluntary recruitment for the military following on from which
the F-FDTL announced that it intends to recruit 600 persons in 2009.

• On 4 November, a petition signed by over 1,400 veterans was submitted to the Prime
Minister by MP Roque Rodrigues. The Petition claims that the 2006 veterans’ law is discriminatory.

• Preparations for the deployment of F-FDTL units to assist border policing continue.

• In Ermera on 6 November in the vicinity of Houmbai village, $5 dollars was demanded by local
people from passing UN staff as they had cleared a fallen log off the road. UNPol are investigating.

• On 5 November, members of the Korka Martial Arts Group conducted an illegal checkpoint at
Bulhomau village in Lautem as a result of fighting the day before. Police responded and arrested 17 people.

• On 9 November in Molop village in Bobonaro, four men were arrested for possession of
homemade firearms in the wake of reports of fighting in the area.

• Tensions reportedly continue in Beaco village between the village and members of the CPDRDTL
group who are at large in the hills near to the village. Police are attempting to deal with the
situation through dialogue.

13 – 20 NOVEMBER

• There were 69 recorded incidents across Timor-Leste. This is higher than the last reporting
period (68). UN Police (UNPol) made 67 arrests.

• It is reported that some limited hostility to the UN remains in the vicinity of Comoro Police
Station as a result of the Hit and Run in the last reporting period. This has resulted in some isolated incidents of stones being thrown at UNPol vehicles in and around the Comoro Police Station/Comoro Markets.

• The PNTL continue to conduct checkpoints in Dili.

Image: Australian Federal Police officer comforts an East Timorese child.

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