Private (Pte) M English and Pte D Townsend, 8 Platoon, C Company, 5th/7th Battalion (Mechanised), ...

Accession Number P03607.099
Collection type Photograph
Object type Black & white - Film original negative 35mm safety base
Maker Immig, John
Place made East Timor
Date made April 2000
Conflict East Timor, 1999-2013
Copyright Item copyright: © Australian War Memorial
Creative Commons License This item is licensed under CC BY-NC
Description

Private (Pte) M English and Pte D Townsend, 8 Platoon, C Company, 5th/7th Battalion (Mechanised), The Royal Australian Regiment (5/7 RAR) guard a sandbagged checkpoint at Nunurra Bridge PUCP ?, on the western border of East Timor. Standing at right is Locally Employed Civilian (LEC) Amilka (Amigra?) Fernedez. Following the overwhelming vote for independence by the East Timorese on 30 August 1999 in the United Nations (UN) sponsored referendum, the pro-Indonesian militia launched a campaign of destruction, arson and murder, killing approximately 1500 people and forcing 300 000 others into West Timor as refugees. On 15 September, the UN issued a resolution, calling for a multinational force to restore peace and security and facilitate humanitarian assistance operations. By 20 September 1999, the first coalition force began deploying to East Timor as part of Australian-led International Force for East Timor (INTERFET). Five months later in February 2000, INTERFET handed control of military operations over to the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET), who were to maintain security, establish an effective administration and develop civil and social services.