Security Council resolution 1272 (1999) on the situation in East Timor, U.N. Doc. S/RES/1272 (1999).


Adopted by the Security Council at its 4057th meeting, on 25 October 1999


The Security Council,

Recalling its previous resolutions and the statements of its President on the situation in East Timor, in particular resolutions 384 (1975) of 22 December 1975, 389 (1976) of 22 April 1976, 1236 (1999) of 7 May 1999, 1246 (1999) of 11 June 1999, 1262 (1999) of 27 August 1999 and 1264 (1999) of 15 September 1999,

Recalling also the Agreement between Indonesia and Portugal on the question of East Timor of 5 May 1999 and the Agreements between the United Nations and the Governments of Indonesia and Portugal of the same date regarding the modalities for the popular consultation of the East Timorese through a direct ballot and security arrangements (S/1999/513, annexes I to III),

Reiterating its welcome for the successful conduct of the popular consultation of the East Timorese people of 30 August 1999, and taking note of its outcome through which the East Timorese people expressed their clear wish to begin a process of transition under the authority of the United Nations towards independence, which it regards as an accurate reflection of the views of the East Timorese people,

Welcoming the decision of the Indonesian People's Consultative Assembly on 19 October 1999 concerning East Timor,

Stressing the importance of reconciliation among the East Timorese people,

Commending the United Nations Mission in East Timor (UNAMET) for the admirable courage and determination shown in the implementation of its mandate,

Welcoming the deployment of a multinational force to East Timor pursuant to resolution 1264 (1999), and recognizing the importance of continued cooperation between the Government of Indonesia and the multinational force in this regard,

Noting the report of the Secretary-General of 4 October 1999 (S/1999/1024),

Noting with satisfaction the successful outcome of the trilateral meeting held on 28 September 1999, as outlined in the report of the Secretary-General,

Deeply concerned by the grave humanitarian situation resulting from violence in East Timor and the large-scale displacement and relocation of East Timorese civilians, including large numbers of women and children,

Reaffirming the need for all parties to ensure that the rights of refugees and displaced persons are protected, and that they are able to return voluntarily in safety and security to their homes,

Reaffirming respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Indonesia,

Noting the importance of ensuring the security of the boundaries of East Timor, and noting in this regard the expressed intention of the Indonesian authorities to cooperate with the multinational force deployed pursuant to resolution 1264 (1999) and with the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor,

Expressing its concern at reports indicating that systematic, widespread and flagrant violations of international humanitarian and human rights law have been committed in East Timor, stressing that persons committing such violations bear individual responsibility, and calling on all parties to cooperate with investigations into these reports,

Recalling the relevant principles contained in the Convention on the Safety of United Nations and Associated Personnel adopted on 9 December 1994,

Determining that the continuing situation in East Timor constitutes a threat to peace and security,

Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,

1. Decides to establish, in accordance with the report of the Secretary-General, a United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET), which will be endowed with overall responsibility for the administration of East Timor and will be empowered to exercise all legislative and executive authority, including the administration of justice;

2. Decides also that the mandate of UNTAET shall consist of the following elements:

(a) To provide security and maintain law and order throughout the territory of East Timor;

(b) To establish an effective administration;

(c) To assist in the development of civil and social services;

(d) To ensure the coordination and delivery of humanitarian assistance, rehabilitation and development assistance;

(e) To support capacity-building for self-government;

(f) To assist in the establishment of conditions for sustainable development;

3. Decides further that UNTAET will have objectives and a structure along the lines set out in part IV of the report of the Secretary-General, and in particular that its main components will be:

(a) A governance and public administration component, including an international police element with a strength of up to 1,640 officers;

(b) A humanitarian assistance and emergency rehabilitation component;

(c) A military component, with a strength of up to 8,950 troops and up to 200 military observers;

4. Authorizes UNTAET to take all necessary measures to fulfil its mandate;

5. Recognizes that, in developing and performing its functions under its mandate, UNTAET will need to draw on the expertise and capacity of Member States, United Nations agencies and other international organizations, including the international financial institutions;

6. Welcomes the intention of the Secretary-General to appoint a Special Representative who, as the Transitional Administrator, will be responsible for all aspects of the United Nations work in East Timor and will have the power to enact new laws and regulations and to amend, suspend or repeal existing ones;

7. Stresses the importance of cooperation between Indonesia, Portugal and UNTAET in the implementation of this resolution;

8. Stresses the need for UNTAET to consult and cooperate closely with the East Timorese people in order to carry out its mandate effectively with a view to the development of local democratic institutions, including an independent East Timorese human rights institution, and the transfer to these institutions of its administrative and public service functions;

9. Requests UNTAET and the multinational force deployed pursuant to resolution 1264 (1999) to cooperate closely with each other, with a view also to the replacement as soon as possible of the multinational force by the military component of UNTAET, as notified by the Secretary-General having consulted the leadership of the multinational force, taking into account conditions on the ground;

10. Reiterates the urgent need for coordinated humanitarian and reconstruction assistance, and calls upon all parties to cooperate with humanitarian and human rights organizations so as to ensure their safety, the protection of civilians, in particular children, the safe return of refugees and displaced persons and the effective delivery of humanitarian aid;

11. Welcomes the commitment of the Indonesian authorities to allow the refugees and displaced persons in West Timor and elsewhere in Indonesia to choose whether to return to East Timor, remain where they are or be resettled in other parts of Indonesia, and stresses the importance of allowing full, safe and unimpeded access by humanitarian organizations in carrying out their work;

12. Stresses that it is the responsibility of the Indonesian authorities to take immediate and effective measures to ensure the safe return of refugees in West Timor and other parts of Indonesia to East Timor, the security of refugees, and the civilian and humanitarian character of refugee camps and settlements, in particular by curbing the violent and intimidatory activities of the militias there;

13. Welcomes the intention of the Secretary-General to establish a Trust Fund available for, inter alia, the rehabilitation of essential infrastructure, including the building of basic institutions, the functioning of public services and utilities, and the salaries of local civil servants;

14. Encourages Member States and international agencies and organizations to provide personnel, equipment and other resources to UNTAET as requested by the Secretary-General, including for the building of basic institutions and capacity, and stresses the need for the closest possible coordination of these efforts;

15. Underlines the importance of including in UNTAET personnel with appropriate training in international humanitarian, human rights and refugee law, including child and gender-related provisions, negotiation and communication skills, cultural awareness and civilian-military coordination;

16. Condemns all violence and acts in support of violence in East Timor, calls for their immediate end, and demands that those responsible for such violence be brought to justice;

17. Decides to establish UNTAET for an initial period until 31 January 2001;

18. Requests the Secretary-General to keep the Council closely and regularly informed of progress towards the implementation of this resolution, including, in particular, with regard to the deployment of UNTAET and possible future reductions of its military component if the situation in East Timor improves, and to submit a report within three months of the date of adoption of this resolution and every six months thereafter;

19. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.






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