07 March 2017

Embassy of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste (East Timor) to the United States of America in Washington, D.C.

Welcome to the official website of the Embassy of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste (East Timor) to the United States of America in Washington, D.C.

On May 20, 2002, after 25 years of Indonesian occupation and four years under a United Nations protectorate government, Timor-Leste became the newest country of the 21st century and the youngest in Southeast Asia.

This website provides up-to-date information about Timor-Leste including culture, economy, travel information, investment opportunities, consular affairs and links to various official sites.

So, please enjoy surfing. Should you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact our embassy in Washington, D.C.

Sincerely yours,
Domingos Sarmento Alves
Appointed Ambassador to the U.S.



03 March 2017

Council of Ministers’ meeting of February 24 th, 2017

Presidency of the Council of Ministers

Sixth Constitutional Government
Dili, February 24th, 2017
Press Release
Meeting of the Council of Ministers of the 24th February 2017
The Council of Ministers met this Friday, at the Government Palace, in Díli, and the Minister of State, Coordinator of State Administration Affairs and Justice and Minister of State Administration submitted the Government Decree on technical procedures to carry out the presidential elections abroad, which are intended to guarantee the vote and vote count procedure, as well as the tabulation of the electoral results from the diaspora, for the election of the President of the Republic. The Government Decree that regulates the conduct of electoral observation, carried out by individuals representing national or international organisations, was also approved.
The Government Decree that regulates the organisation and functioning of the voting centres and voting stations and the Decree that regulates the conducting of voting procedures, vote counting and tabulation of results were all approved.
To guarantee the fulfilment of electoral justice, the Government approved the Decree on the execution of monitoring of the electoral process, as well as on the activities for journalistic coverage of the electoral process. To support the right to vote for all citizens, the Government approved the Decree on the voting process in hospitals and prison establishments.
Lastly, the Council of Ministers approved the Government Decree on the presence of the PNTL Forces at the voting centres, as an exception, to provide for the safety of all that participate in the electoral process. ETLJB

26 February 2017

Government works to ensure East Timor presidential elections preparation ‘on track’

Government works to ensure elections preparation ‘on track’

Minister of State and of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers and

Official Spokesperson for the Government of Timor-Leste

 Dili, February 20th, 2017

Government works to ensure elections preparation ‘on track’

The Government, through the work of the National Electoral Commission [CNE], the Technical Secretariat for Electoral Administration [STAE], the Ministry of State Administration and the Ministry of the Interior are making all necessary preparations for the upcoming Presidential election to be held on the 20th of March 2017.

On the 15th of February the candidates for the Presidential election, validated by the Court of Appeals, were announced by the STAE. All eight applicants for candidacy were found to be eligible. The candidates are: Amorim Vieira, António da Conceição, António Maher Lopes, Francisco Guterres Lu-Olo, José António de Jesus Neves, José Luís Guterres, Luís Alves Tilman e Maria Ângela Freitas da Silva.

Timor-Leste is well regarded for our electoral processes and pluralism and in the recently published 2016 Democracy Index was ranked 1st in South East Asia, 5th in Asia and 43rd of all states assessed. The recent local elections held throughout the country in October and November last year were calm and orderly.

As in the past, international election observers will be present during the election period this year. A team from the European Union will be led by Chief Observer, Ms. Bilbao Barindica who said that she was “honored to lead the EU Electoral Observation Mission to Timor-Leste” and that she trusted that “all stakeholders will contribute to ensure that the upcoming elections will further consolidate the country's track record for well-run, credible and peaceful elections."

Security plans for the electoral period are being coordinated in line with the Strategic Concept for Defence and Security approved last year by the Government after a being developed through a broad consultation with stakeholders to achieve consensus. This high-level policy document articulates the Strategic Objectives of Defence and National Security, including ensuring “the freedom and security of people to exercise their fundamental rights and freedoms, public peace, protection of their property and national heritage”.

Spokesperson, Minister of State Agio Pereira, noted “election preparations are on track and we are confident that this year our country’s reputation for holding free, fair and well organized elections in an atmosphere of peace and calm will be further enhanced.”ENDS etljb

East Timor Government declares Ash Wednesday a public holiday

Presidency of the Council of Ministers

Sixth Constitutional Government

Dili, February 23rd, 2017

Press Release

Day Off on March 1st, 2017

The Government has decided to grant a day off on March 1st – Ash Wednesday on the catholic calendar – to all employees and agents of the ministries or their dependent services, as well as the institutes and integrated indirect State administration bodies.

Ash Wednesday is of great importance to the Christian community, for being the first day of Lent in the calendar of the catholic religion; occurring 40 days before Easter.

This decision is based on Law no. 10/2005, of August 10th, which determines the days which are national holidays and official commemorative dates, and those days that are not a holiday, but for which a day off can be granted. ENDS etljb

Prime Minister of East Timor makes official visit to New Zealand

Prime Minister makes official visit to New Zealand

Minister of State and of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers and

Official Spokesperson for the Government of Timor-Leste

 Dili, February 24th, 2017

Prime Minister makes official visit to New Zealand

The Prime Minister, H.E. Dr. Rui Maria de Araújo, is undertaking an official visit to New Zealand, leaving Díli on the 25th of February and returning on the 4th of March. The visit is being conducted in response to an invitation from the Government of New Zealand and will see the Timor-Leste delegation, including the Prime Minister’s wife, Dr. Teresa Madeira Soares, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, H.E. Hernâni Coelho, the Minister of the Interior, H.E. Longuinhos Monteiro, and the Second Commander General of the National Police Force of Timor-Leste, Faustino da Costa, visiting the cities of Auckland, Wellington and Dunedin.

During this visit Prime Minister Araújo will engage in bilateral discussions with the Prime Minister of New Zealand The Rt. Hon. Bill English MP. A business dinner will be held in Auckland to update participants on national development and encourage New Zealand companies to pursue opportunities in Timor-Leste. The delegation will interact with organizations having expertise that may help Timor-Leste’s transition to a more diversified economy, including the Shaw Dairy Farm based in Auckland and the Royal Albatross Centre on the Otago Peninsula, a successful model for eco-tourism. A visit will be conducted to the New Zealand Police College in Wellington to honor the enduring contribution made by the Police of New Zealand to Timor-Leste’s national development. Visits to the Auckland University of Technology and the University of Otago in Dunedin will give an opportunity to observe these institutions of higher education and meet with the Timorese students enrolled in them.

New Zealand made significant defence and security contributions around the time of Timor-Leste’s Restoration of Independence and the ongoing relationship has since transitioned to focus on economic development with aspects such as private sector development, education and training, and security and justice. New Zealand’s Foreign Affairs Minister, The Hon. Murray McCully MP, visited Timor-Leste in 2012 and 2014 and the Embassy of Timor-Leste in New Zealand, based in the city of Wellington, was opened in 2014.

Spokesperson, Minister of State Agio Pereira, noted “Timor-Leste welcomes the opportunity to encourage business partnership and to meet with New Zealand experts in areas that are important to the economic diversification of Timor-Leste. This trip by the Prime Minister will strengthen the warm relationship already enjoyed by Timor-Leste and New Zealand and build on our history of friendship and cooperation.”ENDS etljb

24 February 2017

The struggle in Iliomar : resistance in rural East Timor / Ernest Chamberlain

Read an extract here :https://timorarchives.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/1983-ceasefire_2013-extract.pdf

Chamberlain, Ernest, 1944-

Description Point Lonsdale, Vic. : E. Chamberlain, 2008
1 v. (various pagings) : ill., maps, ports. ; 29 cm.

ISBN 9780980562309

Previous English language eds.: 2003, 2004.MIndonesian language ed.: 2004.

Includes material on FALINTIL personalities, organisation and operations. As well asIliomar, this monograph also covers Resistance activities more broadly across East Timor opposing the Indonesian occupation.

Includes bibliographical references.

Subjects Forças Armadas da Libertação Nacional de Timor-Leste.  |  Iliomar (Timor-Leste) -- Politics and government -- 20th century.  |  Iliomar (Timor-Leste) -- History -- Autonomy and independence movements.
Available From E. Chamberlain, 1 Watermans Court Point Lonsdale VIC 3225

General Information available here: http://www.etwa.org.au/about/timor-leste/

11 February 2017

Petition to the Australian House of Representatives on the maritime border with East Timor

The NSW Timor Sea Justice Forum has initiated a formal paper petition to the House of Representatives. (see links at foot of post)

A group has formed as the NSW Petition Group for organisation purposes. Thanks to the 12 people who agreed to do this. A good, strong, workable group.

It is intended to be printed on one sheet, back and front. The back shows a map and describes the issue as simply as possible. Download it here.

The petition as it stands can’t be signed online, but must be printed and then signed, with the paper itself being returned/posted to me.

However, it will go online in June on the Petitions Committee website, but can only be there for four weeks.

The timing is such that the online signatures can then be combined with the paper ones and will be presented together. That was the advice I received.

There will be plenty of notice about this.

As a paper petition, this is designed to pick up some of those who do not, will not, or cannot access online petitions.

There is no age limit on who can sign, and addresses are not required.

You are encouraged to send it out widely.

The Parliamentary Petitions Committee has given advice about this petition.  Here is the link to the Committee if you would like more information.


You can also sign the statement to the Foreign Minister on the Timor Sea Justice Campaign website in Melbourne too, as well as this formal Petition to the House.



Thanks to Sr. Susan Connelly

TIMFO.ORG NSW Timor Sea Justice Forum supports East Timor's campaign to determine its maritime boundary with Australia

TIMFO.ORGhttp://timfo.org/ - There is no maritime boundary between our two countries, only provisional arrangements for resource sharing. The Timorese people say that "drawing the line" is an important and final step in fully determining their sovereign territory.

The video trailer for a new documentary "Timor to Draw the Line" gives you a glimpse of the history and context of this final struggle.

This map shows what the boundary is likely to look like according to the application of international law - courtesy of Timor-Leste's Maritime Boundary Office

This map shows what the boundary is likely to look like according to the application of international law - courtesy of Timor-Leste's Maritime Boundary Office

East Timor Council of Ministers’ meeting of February 7th, 2017

Presidency of the Council of Ministers

Sixth Constitutional Government

Dili, February 7th, 2017

Press Release

Council of Ministers meeting of February 7th, 2017

The Council of Ministers met on Tuesday at the Government Palace in Dili, and approved the proposals for financing agreements with the European Union for the Afforestation and Sustainable Agriculture Programme and for the Public Finance Management Strengthening Programme, for the period 2017-2021. These financing proposals arise following the adoption, last year, of the indicative programme of the European Union / Africa, Caribbean and Pacific for Timor-Leste. The signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the European Union, concerning the deployment of observers from that international institution for both presidential and legislative elections this year in Timor-Leste, was also approved.

The National Policy for the Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) for the period 2017 to 2019, presented by the Coordinator of ICT from the Prime Minister's Office, was approved. It is a cross-sectional policy for the ICT sector, which aims to coordinate functions of different entities with responsibility in that area. With this policy, the Government intends to promote the use of ICT through the provision of government services (Electronic Government), to stimulate and diversify the domestic economy and more competitively integrate Timor-Leste in the regional and global economies. The policy envisages the creation of a consistent and integrated legal regime, formed by a set of laws that can guarantee a safe environment in the use of ICT, including laws on cybercrime, electronic transactions and data protection, as well as regulations and institutions related to them.

The draft law on the establishment of the Asset Recovery Office and the Asset Administration Office, presented by the Ministry of Justice, was approved. That entity will have a mission to help the judicial authorities identify and locate assets related to the practice of crimes and their apprehension for legal purposes.

The Secretary of State for the Support and Socio-Economic Promotion of Women saw two proposals adopted. The first was the Government Resolution approving the National Action Plan Against Gender-based Violence, for 2017-2021. The plan approved in 2012 is now revised according to the governing powers provided for in the Law Against Domestic Violence. The preparation of this Action Plan was preceded by a process of consultation and provides a comprehensive approach. It was developed in accordance with principles of equality, consent, information, protection and security, as well as with the principles and obligations to protect human rights, professional obligations and rules of conduct, responsibility of the government and an approach centred on the victim. It invests in the prevention of gender-based violence, access to justice and the provision of multi-sector services for victims. It also sets coordination mechanisms to ensure effective implementation including monitoring and evaluation.

The second proposal from this Secretary of State approved at this meeting was the signing of the Addendum to the Technical Cooperation Protocol between the Government of the Portuguese Republic and the Government of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste on gender equality. This Protocol, signed in 2012, has been developed in order to achieve the goals of sustainable development and other international commitments on human rights; of particular note are the agreements in the field of gender equality, including the Strategic Plan for Cooperation on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment in the CPLP. The addendum now approved reinforces the principles of knowledge and experience sharing, broadening the scope of activities to be developed between both countries.

The Council of Ministers adopted three proposals presented by the Ministry of Social Solidarity, regarding the contributory scheme of Social Security, recently approved by the National Parliament. The first, the Legal Regime of Disability and Old Age Pensions, regulates protection in situations of disability and old age; the second, the Legal Regime of Protection in Maternity, Paternity and Adoption, regulates protection in situations of maternity, paternity and adoption; and the third, the Legal Regime of Death Benefits, regulates the allowances to which relatives are entitled.

The Registration and Contributory Obligation System was analysed and should soon be submitted for approval by the Council of Ministers.

The Ministry of Finance, together with the Directorate General of the Treasury, took stock of the progress of the monitoring of the financial activity of autonomous services and funds, underway since 2016. This monitoring follows the process of decentralization of financial management, which gave autonomous services and funds of the State full administrative and financial autonomy. These services include the Port Administration in Timor-Leste - PATL, the Airports and Air Navigation Administration in Timor-Leste – ANATL in Portuguese, the National University of Timor Lorosa'e - NUTL, the courts, the Guido Valadares Nacional Hospital, the Equipment Management Institute, the Autonomous Service of Medication and Health Equipments – SAMES in Portuguese, the Institute for Research, Development, Training and Promotion of Bamboo, the Specialized Investment Agency – SIA, the Archive and Museum of Timorese Resistance - AMRT, and the municipalities. ENDS etljb

Government pays respects to Sir Elihu Lauterpacht CBE QC LLD

Minister of State and of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers and

Official Spokesperson for the Government of Timor-Leste

 Dili, February 10th, 2017

Government pays respects to Sir Elihu Lauterpacht CBE QC LLD

It is with deep regret that the Government of Timor-Leste has received news of the passing of Sir Elihu Lauterpacht on the 8th of February 2017. “Sir Eli” was a giant in international law, with an illustrious career that spanned over 60 years in practice and academia.

The Government conveys its condolences to Sir Eli’s family and friends, particularly Lady Catherine Lauterpacht, sons Michael and Connor, and daughters Gabrielle and Deborah.

Elihu Lauterpacht was born in Cricklewood, London, on the 13th of July 1928, the son of Hersch and Rachel Lauterpacht. His father, the late Sir Hersch, played a primary, pioneering role in the emergence of the modern system of international law, a legacy continued and honored by Sir Eli through his work and through the founding of the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law at the University of Cambridge.

Sir Elihu studied at Trinity College Cambridge, was called to the Bar in 1950 and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1970. In his specialist area of international law he worked as an advocate, advisor, arbiter and judge. He was also a lecturer, reader and Honorary Professor of International Law at Cambridge University.

Sir Elihu’s many appearances before the International Court of Justice included his representation of Timor-Leste in the case “Questions Relating to the Seizure and Detention of Certain Documents and Data” which included public hearings at The Hague in January 2014. He advised the Government of Timor-Leste on matters regarding international law over several years and was deeply committed to seeing just outcomes for our nation.

Government Spokesperson, Minister of State Agio Pereira, noted “Sir Eli was a remarkable human being. He was one of the world’s greatest intellects and a fierce and formidable advocate at law. And he was also a true gentleman, charming, kind and generous. The Government recalls his passion for justice, his monumental contribution to the development of international law and his abiding concern for the fair treatment of Timor-Leste. It was a great honour to have him serve our country and he and Lady Cathy will always be considered dear friends of Timor-Leste.”ENDS etljb
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