Friday, June 02, 2006

(East Timor Problems) Population displacement update

“United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)

Date: 02 Jun 2006

Timor-Leste: Population Displacement OCHA Situation Report No. 4

Ref: OCHA/GVA - 2006/0096

OCHA Situation Report No. 4
Timor-Leste - Population Displacement

This report is based on information received from the United Nations Office in Timor-Leste (UNOTIL), the OCHA Regional Office in Bangkok, and the Dili offices of IOM, Oxfam, World Vision International and Care International.


1. The security situation in Dili is essentially unchanged over the last 24 hours with increasing calm accompanied by a continuation of sporadic looting, arson and gang clashes. On 30 May President Gusmao assumed emergency powers and direct control of the security forces and on 1 June the Ministers of Interior and Defence resigned. The Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported on 2 June that Foreign Minister Jose Ramos-Horta had been appointed as the new Minster of Defence while maintaining his position as Foreign Minister. 1,800 Australian forces have been deployed in Dili since 25 May. More than 330 Malaysian troops are in place and 120 Portuguese police are expected in Dili on Saturday 3 June. The number of New Zealand forces deployed is expected to reach 160 by the end of this week.

2. According to data drawn from inter-agency assessments conducted between 29 May and 1 June, and compiled by IOM, 71,300 IDPs are living at 65 locations in Dili. The five largest sites in Dili are Cannossiana Sisters (Balide) with 13,060; Dom Bosco (Comoro) with 13,000; Has Laran Canossa School with 6,000; Obrigado Barraks (UN Compound) with 4,500; and Fatumeta Seminario Maior with 4,064. 40% of sites had received some type of support; 26% of sites had access to medical facilities nearby or within the camp; 49% of site reported availability of food; and 42% reported sufficient quantities of drinking water. Health problems including diarrhoea, fever/malaria, cough and respiratory infections were reported at 26% of the sites. Water quality at 72 % of sites was assessed to be good.

3. UNOTIL estimates an additional 60 to 70 camps housing between 35,000 and 40,000 people are scattered throughout the country, in particular in the districts of Liquiça, Ermera, Aileu, Oecussi, Baucau, as well as in the sub-district of Atauro. Humanitarian agencies have been unable to travel more than 60 km. from Dili for the past several days due to fluctuations in the security situation.

4. Ensuring security around and within IDP locations is of concern to humanitarian agencies. While delivery of food, water and non-food items has been ongoing over the last few days, access by the humanitarian agencies to IDP locations is regularly interrupted due to the fluid security situation. Humanitarian agencies have also had difficulty in ensuring effective security arrangements at warehouses and distribution sites.

5. As a result of looting, widespread shortages of food, commodities and fuel are reported in Dili.

6. The Humanitarian Action Group, including UN agencies and national and international NGOs, continues to meet daily under the chairmanship of he Ministry of Labor, Social Welfare and Reintegration.


7. Priority areas determined by the Humanitarian Action Group as a result of ongoing assessments are: protection, food, water and sanitation, health and shelter. UN agencies are compiling a flash appeal which is expected to be launched next week.

8. The Dili hospital reports fuel shortages.


9. The Timorese Government is undertaking daily distribution of rice and water to IDPs.

10. To ameliorate living conditions, the Government, with the support of UNHCR and others, is planning to establish planned camps where IDPS can live in better condition and receive more timely assistance, until they are able to return home when security improves.


11. Mr. Fin Reske-Nielsen, has been appointed as the new Resident Coordinator for Timor-Leste. He is expected to arrive in Dili next week.

12. WFP is providing comprehensive food packages to vulnerable families and IDPs drawing on a donation from the Chinese Government of 2,000 MT of rice. According to WFP's estimates, the food stocks currently available in Dili will last no longer than 3 weeks.

13. The Australian Defence flights arrived in Dili on 30 May with water, blankets, tents, plastic sheeting as well as medical and blood supplied for the Dili hospital. The Australian Government, through AusAid, has made available 3 million Australian dollars for the provision of assistance to the IDPs in Timor-Leste (1 million to be allocated to NGOs, 1 million to UN agencies, and 1 million for urgent relief items). In Darwin, AusAid has also pre-positioned stockpiles of shelter and non-food items including 10 and 20 litre water containers, water purifying tablets, tarpaulins, tenst, mosquito netting, and blankets. These items are scheduled to be transported to Dili in the coming days.

14. UNICEF is focusing its activities on water and sanitation, health and nutrition and child protection. UNICEF has supported the Timor-Leste Red Cross in the distribution of jerry cans, latrine plates, bottled water and detergent. They have also initiated the procurement of family water kits, sanitation supplies, emergency measles vaccines, oral dehydration salts, therapeutic milk and emergency educational materials. The working group on child protection has also resumed its activities and developed a plan to address child protection concerns.

15. UNHCR will deploy a 9-person emergency response team in the coming days to support the provision of shelter, camp management and protection activities. An airlift of tents, plastic sheeting, and non-food items for up to 30,000 will also be deployed from existing stocks. UNHCR also plans to deploy three large portable warehouses and 1,400 stoves to Dili.

16. An OCHA civil-military coordination officer arrived in Dili on 1 June and additional OCHA Officer to support humanitarian coordination will arrive on 4 June.

17. WHO has mobilized emergency health kits and stands ready to deploy them to Dili upon request of the UN Country Team.

18. IOM has assisted in the delivery of over 60,000 kgs of rice and 60,000 litres of drinking water to 15 IDP sites.

19. UNFPA is mobilizing safe –birth and hygiene kits.

20. ICRC had deployed 7 additional staff to support the work of the local Red Cross society. They have been distributing clean water to IDPs camps since 29 May.

21. Plan International has mobilized 60-80 tonnes of oil and beans from Darwin.

22. OCHA is in close contact with the Office of the SRSG UNOTIL and UN Country Team in Dili and will revert with further information as it becomes available. This situation report, together with further information on ongoing emergencies, is also available on the OCHA Internet Website at <>

Tel.: +41-22-917 12 34
Fax: +41-22-917 0023

In case of emergency only: Tel. +41-22-917 20 10

Desk Officer:

Ms. Megan Gilgan (in GVA) direct Tel. +41-22-917 1558
Mr. Wojtek Wilk (in NY) direct Tel. +1-917-367-9748

Press contact:

(in GVA) Ms. Elizabeth. Byrs direct Tel. +41-22-917 2653
(in N.Y.) Ms. Stephanie Bunker direct Tel. + 1-917 367”

Category: Timor-Leste (East Timor)

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