Timor-Leste Civil Unrest OCHA Situation Report No. 6

Timor-Leste Civil Unrest
OCHA Situation Report No. 6
29 August 2007

Summary Analysis

- 5,125 persons have been reported affected in Viqueque district.

- 2,712 persons have been reported affected in Baucau district.

- In Metinaro, outside of Dili, at least 15 houses were burnt since 23 August 2007 in a conflict.

- Humanitarian assistance has been received by most of the affected population and additional needs are being addressed with the fourth delivery of assistance to the affected areas at the moment.


1. Civil unrest occurred in the week following the announcement of the new government on the 6th of August 2007. Viqueque and Baucau districts were most affected, with 270 private houses burnt and 52 damaged by violent groups especially in Watulari sub-district of Viqueque, and 53 houses burnt in Baucau district. The functioning of public services and schools had been disrupted. Public services and schools have reopened in Baucau district, while schools in Viqueque district remain closed.

2. The overall security situation in Timor-Leste is calm, while the situation remains tense in Viqueque district. United Nations Police Officers (UNPol) in conjunction with the national police of Timor-Leste (PNTL) and the International Stabilisation Force (ISF) remain fully deployed in the area.

3. In Metinaro, outside of Dili, at least 15 houses were burnt since 23 August 2007 in a conflict. Parts of the village population seek refuge in the surrounding mountains and at the police station at night time.


4. According to information from assessments so far, 5,125 persons in Viqueque district are affected and 2,712 persons in Baucau district. While parts of the affected population had their houses burnt, destroyed, damaged or looted, others left their homes due to security concerns. Affected populations stay with host families and gather at police stations, convents, and other compounds in the affected areas. A part of the affected is still holding out in the mountains, but seems to be closer to the villages now and therefore more accessible.


5. Based on the findings of the assessments, the Government of Timor-Leste on 24 August sent a convoy of 30 trucks with food and non-food items from the Government of Timor-Leste and other non-food items provided by CARE, CRS, UNICEF, IOM to assist according to needs unmet so far. Distribution and assessment teams from the Government of Timor-Leste were deployed with the convoy. On return of the convoy towards the end of the week the Government will report on the distribution and the assessment findings.

6. In order to assess the needs of the affected populations that were difficult to reach due to the limited access to some areas, a multi-sector assessment mission consisting of civil servants of the Government of Timor-Leste, international NGOs and UN agencies went to the most affected areas in Watulari and Uatucarbau sub-districts by United Nations helicopters on 23 August 2007. Most of the affected populations had received some assistance already. The need for additional assistance was noted, and the findings as well as lists of the affected populations were shared with the distribution and assessment teams that were deployed by the Government of Timor-Leste to the affected areas on 24 August.

7. On 12 August, 4.7mt tons of rice from the Government of Timor-Leste had been delivered by United Nations helicopters to Watulari and Uatucarbau along with kitchen sets and noodles.

8. On 13 August, the Government of Timor-Leste had sent a convoy of 15 trucks carrying Government food and non-food relief items to Baucau and Viqueque districts. The humanitarian assistance had been delivered to Watulari sub-district, Viqueque and Uatocarabau town in Viqueque district, and to Venilale in Baucau district. The accompanying civil servants of the Ministry of Social Solidarity concluded that in most of the locations more assistance was required, especially non-food items.

9. From 17-19 August a convoy with civil servants from various ministries delivered food and non-food items to Baucau and Quelicai, and mosquito nets and urgently required medical supplies to Viqueque town. An assessment was undertaken at the same time.

10. OCHA is in close contact with the national and international humanitarian aid organizations, the Government, the UN Country Team and UNMIT in Dili and will revert with further information as it becomes available. This situation report, together with further information on ongoing emergencies, is also available on the OCHA Internet Website at http://www.reliefweb.int.

For detailed information, please contact:

OCHA Timor-Leste

Philippe Schneider
Mobile: +670 7311786
e-mail: philippe schneider/srsg/unmit@unmit

Florentina Debling
Mobile : +670 7321473
e-mail: humanitarian.ocha@undp.org

Desk Officers:

(NY) Ms. Kirsten Gelsdorf
Tel. +1-917 367 2174
e-mail: gelsdorf@un.org

(GVA) Mr. Jean Verheyden
Tel: +41 22 917 1381

Press contact:

(NY) Ms. Stephanie Bunker
Tel. +1-917 367 5126

(GVA) Ms. Elizabeth Byrs
Tel. +41-22-917 2653


UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.