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International Peace Cooperation Assignment for Timor-Leste Election Observation

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Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste
(Gained independence from the Republic of Indonesia in 2002)

Capital:Dili


In Timor-Leste in 2007, a presidential election was held on April 9, a presidential runoff on May 9, and a parliamentary election on June 30.

This series of elections was the first time that democratic elections were held by the people of Timor-Leste based on an election law enacted in late 2006. Japan, which has continuously assisted Timor-Leste's nation-building efforts, dispatched election observation missions on all three occasions.

Japan sent 14 election observers (5 national government officials and 9 individuals from the private sector) for the presidential election on April 9; 8 election observers (4 national government officials and 4 individuals from the private sector) for the presidential runoff on May 9; and 14 election observers (5 national government officials and 9 individuals from the private sector) for the parliamentary election on June 30. Japanese personnel were assigned to various districts to observe election campaigning, election preparations, voting, and counting.

Presidential election on April 9, 2007

Japanese Observers at a polling station (Dili)(img)

Japanese Observers at a
polling station (Dili)

Verification of voters at a polling station (Dili)(img)

Verification of voters at a
polling station (Dili)

Four out of the 14 election observers arrived in Timor-Leste in the end of March and they collected necessary information and prepared for election monitoring operations. Their activities gained momentum when the remaining 10 members including 7 civilians joined them on April 4. These observers monitored activities on different stages of the election including electoral campaigns, voting preparations, voting and ballot counting and etc., to ensure the execution of free and fair election.

On April 9, 2007, the polling day, those observers visited a total of 127 times to the designated polling and counting stations established in 59 polling centers in Timor-Leste.The statement of the Chief of the Japanese Election Observation Mission (PDF 122KB)Open new windowwas released on April 11. All the Japanese observers completed their mission and returned to Japan by April 14, 2007.

Presidential run-off of election on May 9, 2007

People lined up for vote and a Japanese election observer (Baucau)(img)

People lined up for vote and a
Japanese election observer
(Baucau)

Counting operation in Dili(img)

Counting operation in Dili

Since none of the presidential candidates won a majority of the votes for the presidential election on 9 April 2007, a run-off election was held on 9 May, 2007, between Mr. Francisco Guterres-Lu' Olo and Mr. Jose Ramos Horta, the top two candidates in the first-round election. Japan also dispatched election observers in this run-off election to follow up with the first-round election.

One out of the 8 Japanese observers arrived in Dili on May 4 and began election monitoring activities. Their activities gained momentum when the remaining 6 members including three civilians and one NGO member who had been working in the country joined the team in Dili on May 7. These observers monitored activities on different stages of the election including electoral campaigns, voting preparations, voting and ballot counting and etc., to ensure the execution of a free and fair election.

On the polling day, these observers visited a total of 105 times to the designated polling and counting stations established in 54 polling centers in Timor-Leste.The statement of the Chief of the Japanese Election Observation Mission (PDF:57KB)Open new windowwas released on May 11. All the Japanese observers completed their allotted duties by May 14.

Legislative election on June 30, 2007

Checking ballot boxes at a counting station (Baucau)(img)

Checking ballot boxes at a
counting station (Baucau)

Counting operation in Baucau(img)

Counting operation in Baucau

Some of the 14 observers-9 civilians and 5 government officials- left Japan for Timor-Leste around June 20 and started preparations for election monitoring activities. Their activities gained momentum when the six core members joined the team in Dili on June 27.

These observers monitored activities on different stages of the elections including electoral campaigns, voting preparations, voting and ballot counting, and so on to ensure the execution of free and fair election.

On the polling day, the Japanese observers visited a total of 100 times to the polling and counting stations established in 55 polling centers in Timor-Leste. The statement of the Chief of the Japanese Election Observation Mission was released on July 4. All the Japanese observers completed their allotted duties by July 7.

Deployment of Election Observers

Distribution of Electoral Observers(img)
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