During Australian Defence Force (ADF) operations in Timor-Leste, there have been reports of casualties amongst civilians and non-combatants.
On 23 February 2007, Jacinto Soares, 32, is shot dead by Australian soldiers at an internally displaced persons camp near Dili airport. A second civilian, Atoy Dasy, 36, who was shot in the same incident later dies from his injuries.
On 4 March 2007, 5 Timorese men are killed by Australian special forces in a raid on Major Reinado in Same.
The ADF announced that “Timor-Leste authorities, including the Public Prosecutions Service, reviewed the circumstances of these incidents and decided not to conduct further investigations.”
Responses to questions taken on notice from the Department of Defence,Senate Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade, Inquiry into Australia’s involvement in Peacekeeping Operations; 24 July 2007, pp.34.
“In February 2007, two East Timorese were killed by Australian soldiers responding to a disturbance at a displaced persons facility. According to media reporting, the ADF, East Timorese authorities and the UN are investigating the matter.
a) How are investigations coordinated into incidents involving Australian personnel operating in conjunction with a UN mission?
b) What are the disciplinary ramifications in the event of conflicting findings from different investigations?
a) There is a cooperative agreement in place between the ADF, the UN and Timor Leste authorities with regard to policing. When a situation arises in which both the ADF and the UN have an interest, the relevant commanders will cooperatively make a decision on how the matter is to be investigated…
b)…The UN and the ADF have their own standards and evidential requirements. Findings made by a UN investigation may not fulfil the evidential requirements necessary for proceedings under the Defence Froce Discipline Act…”