Special Envoy of the Secretary-General Ian Martin arrives in Timor-Leste

1 June 2006 Dili - Special Envoy of the United Nations Secretary-General for Timor-Leste Ian Martin arrived here on Monday 29 May 2006. Mr. Martin has been dispatched by United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan to assess the current situation on the ground and help the various parties come together to address the current grievances and broader underlying problems.

The assessment will review the political climate and conditions and institutional vulnerabilities that have led to the current crisis, to identify possible action that could be taken by the United Nations to assist in reconciliation among the Timorese parties.

Mr. Martin is accompanied by senior political affairs adviser Tamrat Samuel. The Special Envoy will report back to the Secretary-General with his findings and recommendations.

Since his arrival, Mr. Martin has met with the President, President of the National Parliament, Prime Minister, Foreign Minister and other officials, as well as the Bishop of Dili, representatives of civil society, members of the diplomatic corps including Ambassadors of the countries who have responded to the Government's request to send troops and police, and the Commander of the Australian Forces.

Mr. Martin was the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the East Timor Popular Consultation and Head of the UN Mission in East Timor (UNAMET) in 1999, as well as serving in UN missions in Haiti, Rwanda, and Ethiopia/Eritrea. Mr. Martin is a former Secretary General of Amnesty International and is currently Representative of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Nepal.

"I am saddened that the occasion for my return to Timor-Leste is the present distressing situation, but I am pleased to have an opportunity to do what I can to assist the Secretary-General in helping the Timorese people and leaders to overcome the crisis", Mr. Martin said.

For additional information, please contact: Donna Cusumano, Chief, Public Information Office, UNOTIL; +670 723 0749