I welcome the presence of Mr. José Luís Guterres, Deputy Prime Minister of Timor-Leste, and once again convey to him the support of France. I also thank Ms. Ameerah Haq, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Timor-Leste, for her briefing. The representative of the European Union will be making a statement at this meeting, and we subscribe to it.
Over the past year, the overall situation in East Timor has continued to improve. It has been characterized by political stability, the development of a constructive dialogue between the Government and the opposition, institution-building and strong economic growth. But it will take time to consolidate this progress. The reassuring presence of the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT) and the international security forces — whose activities we welcome — will be a key element of stability into 2012. France supports the renewal of the mission’s mandate for a further 12 months, as part of a mediumterm consolidation strategy with a view to progressive Timorese ownership of responsibilities now borne by UNMIT.
We share the concern of the Government that responsibility for law and order should rapidly be transferred to the Timorese police, in line with criteria jointly formulated by the United Nations and the authorities. As indicated in the report of the Secretary- General (S/2010/85), this should make possible a gradual reduction in UNMIT personnel. In his report, the Secretary-General also stresses the importance of fighting impunity for past crimes, which is a prerequisite for sustainable reconciliation. We share the concerns expressed by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and encourage her to remain actively engaged in this area, in conformity with the mandate that the Security Council has given her.
We reaffirm in particular our support for UNMIT’s action in support of the Prosecutor-General of East Timor, including through the mission’s Serious Crimes Investigation Team.