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POLITICS, NATIONAL, DILI

Poland celebrates 20 years of Poland-Timor-Leste bilateral relations

Poland celebrates 20 years of Poland-Timor-Leste bilateral relations

(Photo Tatoli/Filomeno Martins)

DILI, 23 may 2022 (TATOLI) – The Republic of Poland celebrated 20 years of Poland-Timor-Leste bilateral relations.

To mark the occasion, the Ambassador of Poland to Indonesia and Timor-Leste, Beata Stoczynska, and the Honorary Consulate General of Poland in Timor-Leste, Zeenat Awan Aluwihare invited José Ramos-Horta, the President of Timor-Leste, guests from the Government, the diplomatic corps and the private sector for a high-level function at Novo Turismo Hotel, in Dili.

In 2002, Poland established diplomatic relations with Timor-Leste following Timor-Leste’s restoration of independence on may 20, 2002.

The anniversary comes as the two countries are committed to strengthening bilateral relations and expanding economic ties.

In her speech, the Ambassador of Poland to Indonesia and Timor-Leste, Beata Stoczynska said: “During the last 20 years, Poland and Timor-Leste have been experiencing solid Political cooperation.

“Polish government is very much interested in promoting economic cooperation between business from Poland and Timor-Leste.”

“We are all impressed with how Timor-Leste overcome the challenges of economic development and build a more and more prosperous society,” Ambassador Beata Stoczynska made the comments during the celebration at the Novo Turismo Hotel, in Dili, on sunday night.

Poland has been an important partner of Timor-Leste throughout, even before achieving independence. 

The visit by Pope John Paul II to Timor-Leste in october 1989 highlighted the plight of the Timorese people during the occupation and gave international visibility to the small country’s struggle.

“We are impressed with Timor-Leste’s faithfulness to democracy. We are proud that the saint of Polish soil, Pope John Paul II promoted and protected the crucial values such as freedom and hope for the Timorese people on october 12, 1989. And today, we can see Timor-Leste as a beautiful democratic country,” Ambassador Stoczynska said.

She stressed that Poland has been contributing to Timor-Leste’s development through official assistance. The Polish government has also offered scholarships for Timorese students in Timor-Leste.

“Since 2013, Poland has been delivering development aid to Timor-Leste in the form of small grants, for example, the Escola Técnico Professional Santa Maria Mazzarella in Venilale, and health and vocational projects.”

Poland also contributed to the UN Missions in the country in judicial, medical, and political capacities. Bilateral visits and fruitful exchanges of high-level government representatives took place over the years. In 2009, Lech Walesa, former President of Poland and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, visited Dili to inaugurate the office of the Consulate General.

Stoczynska congratulates the Timorese people on Timor-Leste’s 20th Anniversary of Restoration Independence Day: “I would like also to congratulate Jose Ramos Horta for winning the 2022 Presidential Election. I wish him all the very best in undertaking the mission as the president of the Timorese people.”

At the same place, President José Ramos-Horta said Poland is a very important EU member state with strong economic indicators: “Our two countries enjoy excellent diplomatic relations.”

“I am very much admired of Poland history. Poland’s economy was one of the most dynamic with 7 or 8 % growth in Europe and we look forward to a bigger Polish presence in Timor-Leste in whatever you find it necessary to support Timor-Leste,” said Horta. 

“Thank you for being with us on the 20th anniversary of our independence and my installation as President,”

Horta added within his constitutional power limitation, he will encourage the government and parliament to be more active in seeking and expanding Timor-Leste’s bilateral ties with Poland as it does with other European countries.

“We wish Poland and Timor-Leste have a very strong bilateral relationship,” Horta concluded,

 

Journalist: Filomeno Martins 

Editor: Nelia Borges 

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