East Timor: Internal Strife, Political Turmoil, and Reconstruction [April 26, 2007] [open pdf - 250KB]
"The situation in East Timor has changed dramatically over the past year. Prior to 2006 the international community's main concern focused on possible tensions in East Timor's relations with Indonesia. Now the main threat to East Timor is internal strife resulting from weak, or collapsed, state institutions, rivalries among elites, a poor economy, unemployment, and east-west tensions within the country. The reintroduction of peacekeeping troops and a United Nations mission, the flow of revenue from hydrocarbon resources in the Timor Sea, and upcoming elections may help East Timor move towards more effective and democratic government. East Timor could potentially gain significant wealth from energy resources beneath the Timor Sea. Experts say a key challenge for East Timor will be to create enough political stability to focus on building state capacity with resources from the Timor Sea and prevent them from being squandered by corrupt practices."
CRS Report for Congress, RL33994