East Timor descends into further violence: Downer
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
|Wikinews Australia has in-depth coverage of this issue: 2006 East Timor crisis|
According to the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), there were shootouts near Becora and Fatuahi on Tuesday involving the East Timorese military and militia.
Violence erupted in East Timor in April 2006 following the dismissal of 585 East Timorese soldiers for deserting. On April 28, 2006, five people were killed in violent clashes in Dili. An independent commission has been setup by the East Timorese government to investigate complaints by the dismissed soldiers. Mr. Downer urged the commission to "conclude its work quickly as a first step to the resolution of the current crisis".
Mr. Downer said that he had made it clear to the East Timorese government that Australia will assist in East Timor if requested. He said that the Australian military have a rapid response team, consisting of naval ships, aircraft and troops deployed in Northern Australia ready to go to East Timor if requested.
DFAT is advising Australians not to travel to East Timor due to what it calls an "extremely dangerous security situation". It advises that those who are already in East Timor consider leaving.
- "Australia will help in East Timor if requested: Downer" — Wikinews, May 10, 2006
- The Australian House of Representatives. "Hansard - May 23, 2006" — , May 23, 2006
- Smart Traveller. "East Timor - Travel Advice" — , May 24, 2006
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