News Release 

UN Peacebuilding in Timor-Leste

An insider's account of how the UN undertook peace-building in a shattered country

World Scientific


IMAGE: This is the cover of 'Rising from the Ashes: UN Peacebuilding in Timor-Leste'. view more 

Credit: World Scientific

Authored by Ms Viji Menon, Rising from the Ashes: UN Peacebuilding in Timor-Leste is an in-depth look into the UN's first experiment in building peace in the aftermath of conflict, in a country that had no infrastructure, no government or human resources.

With East Timor as the case study, the book examines challenges to peace-building/nation-building faced in two parts: the first focuses on those faced by the UN over a period of 13 years, what it entailed, the difficulties faced and the continuing challenges faced after the UN left. The second examines how Timor-Leste has progressed in peace-building after the UN's withdrawal in 2012. The book argues that peace-building is a long-term endeavor and is a work in progress in Timor-Leste, based on the good foundations laid by the UN.

The book examines the sensitive dynamics between the UN and a sovereign government, and provides an analysis of the difficult interplay between international actors and local leaders which has made peace-building such a challenging endeavor. While the foundations were laid by the UN, the book provides insightful analysis of the continuing political, economic and security challenges Timor-Leste currently still faces as a fragile post-conflict country trying to succeed as a viable nation, and includes recommendations on what can be done to assist the country to develop further.


Rising from the Ashes: UN Peacebuilding in Timor-Leste retails for US$88 / £80 (hardback). To order or know more about the book, visit

About the Author

Viji (Vijayalakshmi) Menon has been a Visiting Senior Fellow with the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore since November 2017. She is a former Singapore Foreign Service Officer who held senior positions in the Government and in Singapore's diplomatic missions abroad before joining the UN. She worked with the UN in Timor-Leste for 6 years.

Ms Menon graduated from the then University of Singapore with a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree in Political Science. She was awarded a Fulbright scholarship in 1982 and in 1983 obtained a Masters in International Public Policy from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, U.S.A.

About World Scientific Publishing Co.

World Scientific Publishing is a leading international independent publisher of books and journals for the scholarly, research and professional communities. World Scientific collaborates with prestigious organisations like the Nobel Foundation and US National Academies Press to bring high quality academic and professional content to researchers and academics worldwide. The company publishes about 600 books and over 140 journals in various fields annually. To find out more about World Scientific, please visit

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