Statement by Ambassador Kazuo Kodama
Chargé d’Affaires ad interim
Permanent Mission of Japan to the United Nations
At the Debate of the Security Council
On the Situation in Timor-Leste
12 November 2012
I would like to begin by extending a warm welcome to H.E. José Luis Guterres, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, and thank him for his statement. I would also like to extend my appreciation to Mr. Finn Reske-Nielsen for his comprehensive briefing to the Council in his capacity as Acting Special Representative of the Secretary-General.
I also would like to give my full compliments to the outstanding achievements made by the people of Timor-Leste, inter alia, by successfully carrying out two rounds of presidential and parliamentary elections this year. I believe these achievements allow the Timorese people to enjoy peace and prosperity through harvesting the fruits of democracy.
We have witnessed a process in which the close partnership between the host country and the UN leads the country to a promising trajectory. In this regard, I would like to make special mention of the role played by successive previous UN operations in Timor-Leste, which will be closed at the end of this year, along with the closure of the UNMIT.
After the independence of Timor-Leste, the UN missions that operated in the country had evolved in accordance with the country’s progress. These missions have maintained close relations with the Timorese and walked together with the people. To this end, the Security Council played a very important role in synchronizing the missions’ mandates with the progress of Timor-Leste. These experiences give us confidence regarding the effectiveness of UN peacekeeping for international peace and security.
Achievements in Timor-Leste give us great hope for the people who suffered in the aftermath of the conflict, and serve to encourage them to start their way forward toward their future.
Japan feels privileged to be a part of these UN efforts in Timor-Leste. Japan’s engineering units participated in UNTAET and UNMISET and contributed to establishing the foundation for the country’s development. In addition, Japan dispatched its civilian police personnel to support Timorese efforts to build their policing capacity and strengthen their security institutions. Japan also supported the national electoral process by dispatching election observers. Until September, Japan continued its contribution to UNMIT by dispatching two military liaison officers to the mission. Timorese success allows us to be assured of the effectiveness of our contribution to UN peacekeeping. Digesting our experiences in Timor-Leste, Japan would like to deepen its efforts in working towards international peace and security.
Timorese achievements opened the door to a new stage for further development. In order for Timor-Leste to begin its efforts on the right track in its new stage, successful and seamless transition is vital. In this regard, I would like to emphasize the importance of ongoing joint efforts by Timor-Leste and UNMIT for a smooth transition. Japan firmly believes that the strong partnership between Timor-Leste and UNMIT will add a successful transition to their success story as well.
I believe the key to the Timorese success is a spirit of unity, which has been fully exercised not only among the Timorese people but also among all entities working on the ground including UNMIT, UNDP, UNFPA, UN-Women, UNICEF, and its bilateral partners. The coming future will require more coordinated, harmonized and strengthened efforts by all relevant entities under the strong ownership of the Timorese with their enhanced spirit of unity working towards the country’s future prosperity.
In closing, Japan will do its best to support further development of the country. As an old friend of Timor-Leste, going back to the days before independence, Japan supported its nation building efforts, while also supporting its development of human resources, infrastructure and agriculture. Japan will continue to assist Timor-Leste and further deepen its support together with our friends responsible for the future of our Asia-Pacific region and the world.
I thank you.