27 February 2009 The Hon Stephen Smith MP AUSTRALIAN MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS Renewal of United Nations Mission Mandate in Timor‑Leste - I very much welcome the United Nations Security Council decision to renew the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste mandate until 26 February 2010.
The United Nations continues to play a critical role in promoting stability, human rights, democracy and the rule of law in East Timor. Together with the United Nations, Australia will continue to support East Timor’s long-term development.
The United Nations mandate authorises a phased hand-over of policing responsibilities from United Nations to East Timorese police. As this happens, a supporting UN Police presence will remain important. The UN mandate recognises this as a priority.
Australia contributes 50 police to the United Nations Police in East Timor. The Australian-led International Stabilisation Force works closely with the United Nations presence in East Timor.
East Timor continues to make progress in addressing its challenges, including building the capacity of its police force and resettling internally displaced persons.
Media inquiries: Mr Smith's office 02 6277 7500 - Departmental Media Liaison 02 6261 1555