UN police investigate suspected mass grave in East Timor

United Nations police in East Timor are investigating a large site at the village of Passabe where human remains have been found, a spokesman for the Secretary-General said in New York today.
Local residents said more than 50 people could be buried at the 300 by 500-metre site, the spokesman added.

Officers are awaiting the expected arrival in a few weeks of a team of forensic experts who will carry out a detailed examination of the Passabe site and others.

In another development, UN police in East Timor announced today their intention to establish a Rapid Reaction Unit of some 240 officers and a 50-strong Border Control Unit.

Normally UN civilian police in East Timor patrol unarmed, but both these new units, expected to be set up in mid-January, will be armed, according to a UN spokesman.