2002 Statement


H.E. Mr. Yoshiyuki Motomura

Deputy Permanent Representative of Japan

At the Open Meeting of the Security Council on the Situation in Timor-Leste

14 November 2002

Mr. President,

I would like to thank you for convening this open meeting on the situation in Timor-Leste. My thanks go as well to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Ambassador Kamalesh Sharma, for his useful report.

Mr. President,

We appreciate the Report of Secretary-General Kofi Annan on the United Nations Mission of Support in East Timor (UNMISET) dated 6 November. It provides a comprehensive account of the situation in Timor-Leste six months after it achieved its independence, as well as an account of the activities of UNMISET. The Government of Japan welcomes the fact that Timor-Leste is continuing to make steady nation-building efforts. On the other hand, the country still faces a number of challenges, including the building of a self-sustainable nation, resolution of refugee issues, national reconciliation, and the strengthening of relations with neighboring states, as described in the Secretary-General's report.

It is said that heaven helps those who help themselves. Timor-Leste is no exception. In the nation-building process, the endeavors of the people in Timor-Leste themselves are of primary importance. It is first of all necessary that they work towards reconstruction and development and promote national reconciliation so that united efforts for the construction of a self-reliant nation are possible. So long as they continue to make such earnest efforts on their own behalf, it is incumbent upon the international community to continue to assist them, thereby consolidating the achievements that have been realized through the assistance extended in the past.

Japan, for its part, has been the largest donor of assistance to Timor-Leste and, as it intends to continue providing assistance to the fullest extent possible for self-sustainable nation-building, pledged at the donor conference last May a contribution of up to $60 million for the coming three years. Japan hopes to make use of bilateral cooperation to realize this contribution, and towards this end, the Government of Japan met with international and non-governmental organizations in Dili on the 5th and 6th of this month to discuss future Japanese assistance for Timor-Leste. Based upon the deliberations at that meeting, the following day Japan and Timor-Leste held an inter-governmental policy consultation on economic cooperation. At this consultation, Japan expressed its intention to continue to provide assistance with an emphasis on human resources development, agriculture, infrastructure, and peace-building. Furthermore, from the viewpoint of enhancing human security, the Government of Japan is contributing approximately $5,950,000 in the areas of agriculture and community reconstruction through the Trust Fund for Human Security.

I wish to add that the Government of Japan appreciates the activities of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Timor-Leste in fostering reconciliation between former pro-independence groups and former pro-integration groups, and has contributed $530,000 to the Commission. National reconciliation is of crucial importance for the future of the country, and we will continue to provide assistance in that area.

Mr. President,

We welcome the steady progress that UNMISET has made in implementing the mandates entrusted to it by the Security Council in resolution 1410, which has enabled it to meet the timetables set by the Secretary-General in his previous reports. I am informed that the engineering unit dispatched by Japan is working effectively in cooperation with the people of Timor-Leste on the ground. Japan would like to request the Secretary-General to proceed with the implementation of UNMISET's downsizing plan while evaluating the evolving situation in the field carefully and, in so doing, continue to consult closely with troop-contributing countries.

Thank you very much.