Timor-Leste

UN launches $500,000 job-creation project in East Timor

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The United Nations mission in East Timor, the World Bank and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) have signed a grant agreement for $499,000 towards a project to create employment in the poorest communities of the capital city of Dili, the UN mission announced today.
The agreement was signed by the head of the UN Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET), Sergio Vieira de Mello, World Bank representative Sarah Cliffe and UNDP representative Finn Reske-Nielsen. Avelino Coelho, a member of the East Timorese National Consultative Council (NCC) was also present at the ceremony.

Designed to benefit the most disadvantaged neighbourhoods in Dili, the project will hire 600 people to clean up rubble and debris from the streets during the next five months. According to UNTAET, the effort will promote higher living standards, inject wage payment, provide short-term jobs and improve public health assistance through environmental enhancement.

The clean-up project will be regularly monitored by the World Bank, UNDP, the UN mission and an East Timorese political party, the National Council of Timorese Resistance (CNRT).

In other news, an investigation has revealed that the eight former militia suspected of killing a member of the CNRT last week in Maubisse in fact did not take part in the attack. According to UNTAET, a militia member was wounded while trying to stop the attack, which was carried out by one ex-militiaman who eventually killed one man, wounded three others and then escaped.

After the incident, tensions rose and death threats were directed at former militia members in Maubisse, prompting UNTAET to transfer to Dili the eight militia members along with nine others who had already undergone an "integration" process in the area.