East Timor - 16 April to 26 October 2001.
The ADF's continued contribution to the peacekeeping effort in East Timor. UNTAET having taking responsibility from INTERFET provided an interim civil administration and a peacekeeping mission until the country’s independence on 20 May 2002 (following the outcome of the East Timor Special Autonomy Referendum). The mission was to provide security and order, facilitation and coordination of relief assistance to East Timorese, facilitating emergency rehabilitation of physical infrastructure, administering East Timor and creating structures for sustainable governance and the rule of law; and assisting in the drafting of a new constitution and conducting elections.
Elements of 4 RAR (Cdo) was deployed to East Timor on 16 April 2001. During its time deployed, the unit established a security partnership with the East Timorese, focusing strongly on languages, maintaining the relationships of previous AUSBATTs, as well as transferring new technologies. This intelligence led, but people-focused, approach saw the battalion group conduct the majority of its operations in close proximity to the Tactical Control Line (the yet to be agreed official border). The Battalion Group commenced its relief in place with 2 RAR between September and October 2001 with all elements having returned to Australia by 26 October 2001.
Sadly, having received no casualties while deployed to East Timor, PTE David Twining was killed in a motor vehicle accident on 28 October 2001, just four days after his return to Australia.