JRS Dispatches No. 63: East Timor : Law and order called for

A lack of law and order has been causing concern in East Timor, JRS reports. Dili and Los Palos have reported street fighting among youth gangs roaming the streets. Residents complain that there is no police presence to prevent crime and Civpol, due to take over UN security operations soon, says it is under-resourced to fight increasing crime in the cities. Problems are also arising due to a lack of labour regulations. JRS worker, Bryan Pipins, said East Timor currently has no labour laws and each NGO is working on an ad hoc basis. During the past week, two demonstrations were held to protest the wages and work conditions of East Timorese workers. Demonstrators claimed that the UN and other NGOs working in East Timor do not award East Timorese workers managerial positions and that they do not have any voice in decision-making.