Subject: XN: Portugal urges international support for E. Timor

Source: Xinhua

UPDATED: 13:20, October 18, 2006

Portugal urges international support for E. Timor

Portugal's Foreign Minister Luis Amado said on Tuesday his country hopes that the international community, and the United Nations (UN) in particular, can maintain interest in the pacification and stabilization process in East Timor.

Amado was speaking in Luxembourg on the sidelines of a European Union (EU) foreign ministers meeting, in response to a UN report on the clashes in East Timor earlier this year, which sparked severe unrest in the country.

The UN Special Independent Investigation Commission for East Timor said on Tuesday in a 79-page report that the crisis in East Timor "can be explained in great measure by the weakness of the state's institutions and the fragile rule of law."

The Commission recommended the prosecution of government officials, including two former ministers and the commander of the armed forces, who were allegedly responsible for the crisis. It also recommended additional probe into the role of former prime minister Mari Alkatiri.

Portugal, last week, announced that it would send around 58 police officers to the country, to join the existing UN forces there.

Portuguese-speaking East Timor, an island south of Indonesia and northeast of Australia, gained independence in 2002.

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