UNMIT assists Government of Timor-Leste to expedite humanitarian assistance

5 Jul 2008

UNMIT assists Government of Timor-Leste to expedite humanitarian assistance

Dili, Timor-Leste – In an effort to rapidly meet the humanitarian needs caused by the recent violent outbreaks in the eastern part of the country, the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT) and its agencies have provided security and logistical assistance to the Government of Timor-Leste to deliver urgently needed food and resources.

Over the weekend, two UNMIT helicopters delivered five tonnes of food and some miscellaneous kitchen equipment to communities in Viqueque and Watu Carbau in Viqueque District, approximately 95 kms southeast of the capital.

The United Nations Police (UNPol) and the Polisia Nasional Timor-Letse (PNTL) assisted on the ground to ensure that the goods were securely off-loaded and delivered to the appropriate Government authorities.

Today, UNPol and PNTL also provided security escorts for fifteen trucks carrying more rice and kitchen equipment to the districts.

"Many innocent people have been affected by this violence," said the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Mr. Eric Tan. "I would like to reassure the Timorese authorities and the Timorese people that the United Nations will continue to support the humanitarian efforts in every way possible," he added.

Since the violence broke out last week, more than 150 houses have been burned across the country. Hundreds of displaced persons from Watulari sub-district and the area around Viqueque town have been seeking refuge.

Preparations are underway by the humanitarian community for immediate humanitarian response to the affected populations as soon as the security situation allows.

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