12 December 2008

Timor does not face any conventional threat, says Ramos-Horta

Machine translation. Dili 11 Dec 2008 (Lusa) - The President of the Republic of Timor-Leste in Dili said today that the country "not facing any conventional threat."

Jose Ramos-Horta spoke at the opening of the international seminar on Reform Sector Development and Security in East Timor, an initiative of the President and Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao.

"East Timor faces no conventional threats, like almost all countries in the region," explained Jose Ramos-Horta. "All we face, however, non-conventional threats, human trafficking with the forgery of passports," added the head of state Timorese.

Jose Ramos-Horta outlined to participants at the seminar a brief history of the period after the independence referendum held in August 1999.

"I was a lone voice to defend a five-year period of transition before the restoration of independence," said the President, recalling discussions with the Security Council of the United Nations in New York.

Jose Ramos-Horta recalled that the responsibility of peace-keeping operations at the time said it "would be luck" if East Timor could support the United Nations on a transition of two years, as was the case.

"Many East Timorese leaders had also pressed for ultrapatriotism," said Jose Ramos-Horta.

The Head of State stressed that he is "optimistic and proud" of the result achieved in almost seven years of independence, despite the "frustrations, without defining the roles of unemployment, poverty".

"This seminar is the result of a thought that is increasingly unified in terms of security" between head of state and prime minister, said Roque Rodrigues, former Minister of Defense and current coordinator of the group that studies the reform and development sector .

The two-day seminar brings to East Timor officials and scholars from various countries, including the chief of General Staff of the Portuguese Army, General Pinto Ramalho, who will speak on "The Missions of the Armed Forces Public Interest."

Lusa/fim Lusa / end

Original Portuguese text is at http://www.noticiaslusofonas.com/view.php?load=arcview&article=21828&catogory=Timor%20Lorosae

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