Timor-Leste: Saatnya PBB Mengambil Langkah Mundur
Timor-Leste: Saatnya PBB Mengambil Langkah Mundur
Table of Contents
  1. Overview
Has Timor-Leste left behind its violent past?
Has Timor-Leste left behind its violent past?
Briefing 116 / Asia

Timor-Leste: Saatnya PBB Mengambil Langkah Mundur

Ringkasan Ikhtisar

Jumlah kontingen kepolisian Misi Integrasi PBB (UNMIT) di Timor-Leste sebaiknya dikurangi secara drastis untuk mencerminkan membaiknya kondisi keamanan sejak krisis tahun 2006 dan untuk mendukung stabilitas di masa depan. Sejak tahun 2008, Timor-Leste telah memperlihatkan tekad mereka untuk menangani ancaman internal tanpa bantuan dari misi kepolisian PBB ketiga paling besar di dunia ini. Hal ini dicerminkan dengan kecenderungan kepolisian Timor-Leste melapor ke komandannya sendiri, bukan ke polisi PBB. Sudah bertahun-tahun pemerintah tidak menghiraukan nasihat PBB untuk melakukan reformasi drastis di sektor keamanan atau menindak secara hukum kejahatan yang terjadi. Koalisi pemerintahan yang terpilih tahun 2007 cukup stabil dan kelihatannya mampu mengatasi kelemahannya sendiri. Ancaman nyata terhadap stabilitas negara memang masih ada dan kebanyakan adalah dampak dari kegagalan pemerintah menindak secara hukum mereka yang terlibat kerusuhan tahun 2006. Hal ini paling baik ditangani oleh para pemimpin politik Timor-Leste sendiri daripada mengandalkan kehadiran polisi internasional terus. Pada saat mandat UNMIT diperbarui bulan Februari 2011, PBB perlu menyadari bahwa upaya reformasi sektor keamanannya telah gagal karena pemerintah Timor-Leste tidak tertarik dengan usulan yang diajukan.

Meskipun mereka telah memberi sumbangan penting bagi pemulihan stabilitas paska krisis, polisi PBB tidak pernah dilengkapi kemampuan untuk melakukan tugas mereformasi polisi yang sarat muatan politis. Sudah empat tahun misi berjalan, tapi masih belum ada rencana yang disepakati mengenai bagaimana membantu mereformasi polisi Timor-Leste. Malah pemerintah Timor-Leste melakukan upayanya sendiri dengan kemampuan yang terbatas. Perombakan yang menyeluruh terhadap struktur pangkat yang dilakukan tahun 2010 merupakan sebuah langkah nyata menuju profesionalisasi dan independensi polisi. Pemerintah kurang berminat dengan rekomendasi PBB untuk menghukum polisi yang terlibat kerusuhan 2006 dan telah mengambil alih proses gabungan untuk menjaring mereka yang terlibat yang kemungkinan besar berakhir dengan hasil yang sangat terbatas. Disamping itu, beberapa kasus indisipliner semakin memperkuat citra angkatan kepolisian yang tidak ingin atau tidak mampu menghukum pelanggaran yang dilakukan anggotanya. Namun demikian, proses penyerahan kembali tanggung jawab dari PBB ke polisi Timor-Leste dari distrik ke distrik berjalan dengan lancar, meskipun ada tekanan dari sejumlah orang untuk penyerahan secara penuh hingga Maret 2011.

Rekomendasi-rekomendasi penting mengenai reformasi sektor peradilan dan keamanan yang dibuat oleh lembaga-lembaga internasional setelah krisis secara sistematis telah diacuhkan. Pekerjaan Komisi Penyelidikan Independen PBB (UN Independent Commission of Inquiry) telah tergerogoti  karena kasus-kasus paling penting yang mereka usulkan untuk dijadikan penuntutan malah dipetieskan; kemudian kasus-kasus yang lain kalau tidak dihentikan karena kurang bukti, berakhir dengan grasi dari presiden, atau masih dalam proses investigasi yang sudah berlangsung empat tahun ini. Hasilnya adalah keadilan tak tercapai dan hukum menjadi berkarat, sehingga tidak ada yang mencegah orang untuk melakukan kekerasan politik. Ini berbahaya, tapi menambah jumlah polisi internasional takkan menyelesaikan masalah ini.

Misi PBB telah begitu buruk menangani mandatnya dalam membantu reformasi yang lebih luas di sektor keamanan dan upaya-upayanya terus menerus ditolak oleh pemerintah. Sebuah evaluasi sektor keamanan yang bertujuan untuk menjadi panduan dalam menyusun kebijakan masih belum diterbitkan empat tahun setelah dibuat, dan kalau diterbitkan saat ini akan menjadi tidak relevan lagi. Target PBB untuk memisahkan peran polisi dan angkatan bersenjata Timor-Leste ditolak oleh para pemimpin negeri ini, dan mereka lebih memilih menyatukan kedua angkatan tersebut untuk menghindari persaingan. Untuk itu, unit bantuan sektor keamanan dari misi PBB ini harus ditutup.

Seiring dengan pembahasan untuk menentukan seberapa besar sebaiknya misi pemelihara perdamaian di Timor Leste yang mempertimbangkan penarikan pasukan sebelum Desember 2012, maka jelas bahwa misi sebesar itu belum disesuaikan dengan kebutuhan negara saat ini. Kontingen kepolisian PBB perlu dikurangi setengahnya seiring dengan kemungkinan berakhirnya peran eksekutif dari misi ini terhadap kepolisian Timor Leste pada awal 2011.  Apabila jumlah pasukan yang dikurangi hanya sedikit saja seperti rancangan yang ada, hal ini akan meninggalkan suatu kontingen polisi yang terlalu besar yang hanya akan menyembunyikan kekurangan-kekurangan operasional dan logistik yang senantiasa ada di kepolisian Timor-Leste. Pemerintah dan rakyat Timor-Leste sebaiknya memberdayagunakan misi kepolisian yang tinggal untuk memperbaiki kekurangan-kekurangan itu di dalam kurun waktu tersisa yang terbatas 

Selain itu, prioritas pembahasan yang sedang berjalan antara pemerintah dan misi PBB mengenai masa depan UNMIT harus mencakup:

  • Perjanjian yang mengikat dengan pemerintah tentang sejumlah prioritas terbatas mengenai pelatihan dan bantuan terhadap fungsi dasar polisi Timor-Leste oleh polisi PBB yang masih akan tinggal, termasuk mekanisme investigasi dan pembinaan disiplin
  • Negosiasi mengenai syarat-syarat penyerahan aset-aset misi PBB.
  • Bantuan bagi sebuah penilaian independen mengenai kebutuhan dan kapasitas polisi Timor-Leste yang telah diminta oleh pemerintah yang dapat berfungsi sebagai sarana untuk perencanaan pelatihan domestik dan bilateral di masa depan.
  • Pembahasan dengan Australia/New Zealand International Stability Force (Pasukan Stabilitas Internasional Australia/Selandia Baru) mengenai kapan pasukan keamanan internasional (ISF dan UNPOL) dapat meninggalkan Timor-Leste.
  • Pembahasan mengenai peran politik PBB yang berkelanjutan dalam membantu pemilu 2012 maupun dalam pemantauan situasi politik dan HAM di Timor-Leste setelah penarikan UNMIT secara penuh.

PBB akan meninggalkan banyak pekerjaan yang belum selesai dalam pembinaan kemampuan (capacity building) kepolisian Timor-Leste, tapi kerusuhan tahun 2006 lebih disebabkan oleh kegagalan menangani masalah politik daripada oleh kelemahan teknis di aparat keamanan. Cara paling baik untuk mempertahankan stabilitas sampai pemilu 2012 adalah komitmen kuat dari para pemimpin Timor-Leste untuk melakukan persaingan politik secara damai.

Dili/Brussels, 15 Desember 2010

Overview

The policing contingent of the UN Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT) should be sharply reduced in size to reflect improvements in security since the 2006 crisis and to support future stability. Since 2008 the Timorese have shown themselves determined to handle internal threats without the support of the UN’s third-largest policing mission. The local force has answered to its own command rather than UN police. The government has for years ignored UN advice on undertaking difficult reforms in the security sector or pursuing formal justice for crimes committed. A mostly stable coalition government elected in 2007 seems to be able to survive its own weaknesses. Real risks to the country’s stability do remain – many the result of the government’s failure to tackle impunity for the events of 2006. These will be best addressed by the country’s political leaders rather than a continued international police presence. When UNMIT’s mandate is renewed in February 2011, the UN should acknowledge the futility of its security sector reform efforts in the face of government disinterest.

While they made an important contribution to the immediate post-crisis stabilisation, UN police were never equipped to conduct the highly political task of police reform. More than four years into the mission, there is still no agreed plan for how to support reform of Timor-Leste’s police. The government has embarked on its own efforts with limited capacity. A comprehensive overhaul of the rank structure undertaken in 2010 was a real step towards the professionalisation and independence of the police. The government has shown little interest in UN recommendations to punish police linked to turmoil in 2006 and has taken over a joint vetting process that will likely end with very limited results. More recent disciplinary cases have reinforced the image of a force unwilling or unable to punish wrongdoing from within its own ranks. The district-by-district process of handing back responsibility from the UN to the Timorese police has nevertheless progressed steadily, with some pressure for a full handover by March 2011.

Key recommendations on justice and security sector reforms made by international bodies after the crisis have been systematically ignored. The work of the UN Independent Commission of Inquiry has been undermined as the most prominent prosecutions it proposed have been shelved; others have either been thrown out for lack of evidence, have ended in presidential pardons or are still under investigation four years later. The effect has been to deny justice and corrode the rule of law, leaving the country without a strong disincentive for political violence. This is dangerous, but more international police will not solve it.

The UN mission has poorly handled its mandate to assist in broader security sector reform and its efforts have been consistently rebuffed by the government. The review of the security sector intended to guide policy development remains unpublished four years later and at this stage its release would be irrelevant. The UN’s stated goal of delineating the roles of the police and the army has been rejected by Timorese leaders in favour of bringing the two forces closer together to avoid rivalry. The security sector support unit of the mission should be closed.

As talk of “right-sizing” the peacekeeping mission begins with an eye towards its withdrawal by December 2012, it is clear that such a large mission is currently not tailored to the country’s needs. As its executive policing role looks likely to end in early 2011 with the completion of the handover, the police contingent should be reduced by at least half. Current plans for only a limited reduction will leave an oversized police contingent that will mask the continued operational and logistical deficiencies in Timor-Leste’s police. The government and the Timorese police command should engage those UN police who do remain on how best to address these deficiencies between now and the mission’s full withdrawal.

In addition, immediate priorities for discussions underway between the government and the UN mission on the future of UNMIT should include:

  • A binding agreement with the government on a limited set of priorities for training and support to core functions of the Timorese police by those UN police that remain, including investigations and disciplinary mechanisms.
  • Clarification of the likely terms of any handover of assets of the UN mission.
  • Support for an independent assessment of the needs and capacity of Timor-Leste’s police, as requested by the government, which could serve as a tool for planning future domestic and bilateral training.
  • Discussion with the Australia/New Zealand International Stability Force regarding the timing of the departure of the international security presence in Timor-Leste (ISF and UNPOL).
  • Discussion of an ongoing political role for the UN in supporting the 2012 elections as well as in political and human rights monitoring after the full withdrawal of UNMIT.

The UN will leave behind much unfinished work in building the capacity of Timor-Leste’s police, but the violence of 2006 was caused more by a failure to address political issues than it was by technical weakness in the country’s security services. The best way to maintain stability through the 2012 elections would be a strong commitment to peaceful political competition by Timor-Leste’s leaders.

Dili/Brussels, 15 December 2010

Commentary / Asia

Has Timor-Leste left behind its violent past?

Timor-Leste seems to have passed the test. With last Saturday’s parliamentary poll, it has now held three elections this year without significant violence. This will allow for the withdrawal of a UN peacekeeping mission whose 1,100-strong police component has long seemed out of synch with local realities. Its violent recent past may increasingly look like history, although the poor country that celebrated only the 10th anniversary of the restoration of its independence in May still faces numerous challenges.

Concerns that the formation of a new coalition government might give rise to violence, as occurred following the 2007 elections, now look misplaced as provisional results show only four parties due to take seats in parliament (official results are due next week). A look at the seat results shows that the CNRT (National Congress for Timorese Reconstruction) has increased its share from 18 to 30 seats, and looks likely to form another government with former coalition partner Partido Democrático (eight seats) and maybe Frenti-Mudança (two seats).This is good for stability in the short term, but it also carries risks. A stronger government composed of fewer parties may be able to pursue clearer legislative objectives, but it will put great pressure on FRETILIN as perhaps the only party in opposition. As a young country only ten years on from independence, Timor-Leste’s parliament continues to consider questions of fundamental importance to the country’s future on which there is much debate, such as how to spend the billions in its Petroleum Fund, or how to structure land administration. Chosen from party lists and not constituencies, giving them little incentive to engage with communities, Timor-Leste’s parliamentarians to date have struggled to provide either an effective check on the executive or a constructive partner by initiating their own legislation. CNRT’s dominance will mean less active scrutiny and will further erode its role as an instrument of accountability.

The elections were not violence-free. There were some minor incidents of stone throwing and a report of three houses being burnt in Viqueque district in the last few days. But even in this volatile part of Timor-Leste, it was much less than the hundreds burnt around the 2007 polls. When we visited the district in May and asked why, the answer from the police, local government, chefes de suco, and civil society workers alike was unanimous – the threats from heads of the police and army had worked. Their blunt warnings that troublemakers would be shot were backed up with high-profile joint patrols and those contemplating violence got the message. It was a victory for “conflict prevention” that raised new questions about how the country will be governed in the future.