The brief visit of top Indonesian officials to East Timor did not enable them to see all the trouble spots in the territory. Even so, being there on the ground is vastly different from hearing reports relayed to Jakarta. The trip has shown the delegation just how drastic the security situation is, and they have given an undertaking of immediate action. Such promises have come to little in the past, but this time it does seem that the already postponed ballot will go ahead in August after all. The decision to delay voter registration until Friday will gauge how effective the presence of General Wiranto, Foreign Minister Ali Alatas and Minister for Security and former army chief Feisal Tanjung has been. If militia groups obey official calls to put aside their weapons and a semblance of calm ensues, UN officials will work round the clock to make sure all the arrangements are completed on time. But everything hinges on the outcome of yesterday's trip. No doubt there have been pressing matters to keep key government personnel in Jakarta, but had top officials gone to East Timor earlier, it might have prevented some of the killings and terror as well as harassment of UN staff. Indonesia's goodwill and integrity have been on the line over its unwillingness to get tough with militia forces attacking food and medical aid convoys. But the Government finally appears to be working to rein in the terror groups. That will be more easily achieved when frontline police who have been sent from Jakarta actually arrive on the scene when violence flares and start protecting people. To date, they have been conspicuous by their absence. Factions who are bent on sabotaging the vote must be made to realise that if this ballot does not take place, a solution is simply delayed, not abandoned. Whatever happens, East Timor is on the global agenda now. And it will stay there until the independence question is finally solved.