FULL co-operation has been offered by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to a Commission of Inquiry investigating witness protection, the local chief of mission, Mr Robert Van Leeuwen, said yesterday. On Thursday the secretary to the commission, Mr Tim Stephenson said he was disappointed that he had yet to receive a response from the UN refugee agency despite the fact that the commission had made it clear it considered the views of the UNHCR important. The commission, headed by Mr Justice Kempster, was set up in January after a Vietnamese man accused of murder in a Vietnamese detention centre was allowed to go free when the key witness refused to testify because he believed he had not been provided with adequate protection. Appeal Court judge, Mr Justice Kempster was charged with investigating both the specific situation that led the Crown to abandon the case as well as the wider question of witness protection. A report on the first part of the inquiry was handed to the Government yesterday and will be made public on April 8 but the commission was hoping for general comments on witness protection schemes from the UNHCR. Mr Van Leeuwen said the UNHCR had offered the commission its full co-operation and would continue to do so. He said witness protection was an issue that had been with the UNHCR for four years and it was considered very important. But he argued that UNHCR views on witness protection were self-evident. ''It was not my understanding that the general phase as to witness protection was subject to a deadline,'' he said, adding that the UNHCR was ready to assist. But he did concede that no written response had been made.