PRESIDENT FRANCISCO GUTERRES LÚ OLO WELCOMES DIPLOMATIC CORPS AND HIGHLIGHTS TIMOR-LESTE’S DEMOCRATIC RESOLVE

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Díli, Lahane Noble Palace, February 23, 2018 – The President of the Republic Francisco Guterres Lú Olo today highlighted the importance of democracy during the reception of the diplomatic corps.

The Head of State also thanked the international community for the assistance given to the country’s consolidation and development. “The support of our partners is highly valued by the Timorese”, he said.

“Democracy in Timor-Leste is a beloved daughter of the Restoration of Independence, and the direct result of the struggle of our people” the head of state told the dozens of diplomats and other guests at the Lahane Noble Palace, in Dili.

The Head of State commended the democratic achievements of Timor-Leste. “Independence brought for the first time to this land the rule of law, the freedoms and guarantees that ensure respect for the dignity of citizens,” he said.

The President also highlighted that democracy is not limited to voting. “Democracy is precious to us. But it does not limit itself to the choosing of the leaders. Democracy has to be experienced by all citizens in defending their rights, namely the right to a better living in their own country,” he said.

“Stability and peace reign in Timor-Leste as the Timorese people have no tolerance for squandering the progresses we made together in the last 15 years – no tolerance for destabilization,” added the Head of State.

On the ongoing negotiations for the delimitation of land and sea borders, the President reaffirmed the country’s confidence in negotiation and dialogue.

“Timor-Leste has always expressed confidence in the relations of friendship and good neighbourliness and in the potential of dialogue and negotiation,” he said.

“Concerning the negotiation about resources, we always keep in mind our priorities and the need for developing national know-how to give shape to our vision of an economy that adds value to our natural resources,” the President of the Republic said.

“Only in this way will we become by 2030 a medium-high income country and contribute more to our region’s innovation, dynamism and prosperity,” he said.

“Only in this way can we all contribute to the international community goals enshrined in the Sustainable Development Goals, to which our country is fully committed,” added President Lú Olo.

The President of the Republic also stressed that the dialogue has contributed to strengthening friendly relations with neighbouring countries.

“Our trust and reliance in the value of dialogue have emerged stronger from the border negotiation processes, which have contributed to strengthen the friendship and solidarity that have long existed between our peoples and, in the case of the maritime border, with the government and the people of Australia,” said the President of the Republic.

As the Head of State ended his remarks, all guests accompanied his toast to “the deepening of international dialogue and cooperation, the consolidation of Peace and of the well-being of the peoples”.

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