Subject: KY: U.N. Security Council tipped to approve new mission for East Timor

Friday April 1, 11:05 AM U.N. Security Council tipped to approve new mission for East Timor

(Kyodo) _ U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan's special representative in East Timor Sukehiro Hasegawa said Friday that the U.N. Security Council will likely endorse an extended U.N. presence in East Timor.

"I reported to the prime minister that the Security Council is going to most likely approve the new peace-building mission to be created and to be stationed here in East Timor," Hasegawa told reporters after having met with Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri.

Annan recommended on Feb. 18 that the mandate of the U.N. Mission of Support in East Timor be extended beyond its May 20 expiration date year to build upon the foundations already laid on the road to self-sufficiency and to "safeguard the considerable investment made by the international community so far."

He said the mission should continue, in a reconfigured and scaled-down form for a period of up to 12 months, to assist East Timor with border management and control, public administration capacity building, development of a professional police service, and observance of democratic governance and human rights.

The extended mission is expected to include 35 military liaison officers, down from 42, and 40 police trainers, down from the current 157. The number of civilian advisers would also be reduced to 45 from 58, while the mission would have 10 human rights officers, down from the current 14.

"We will carry out these functions and I hope that East Timor will continue to be a well-governed country," Hasegawa said.

He said that while the fledgling country has made progress, assistance is still needed, particularly in the area of justice, finance and foreign investment.

The training of East Timor's police will be given special attention, the special representative said.

Annan's report had pointed to continued incidents of misconduct and human rights abuses perpetrated by Timorese law-enforcement agents as well as the inadequate skills of the police force in various areas.

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