DILI, 01 december 2023 (TATOLI) – The Austrian government wants to establish a consulate in Timor-Leste to strengthen diplomatic relations between the two countries in various areas.
“It’s an honor to meet with Prime Minister, Kay Rala Xanana Gusmão and inform him that we want to open our consulate in Dili. Austria is a small country in Europe, just like Timor-Leste in Southeast Asia, which shares the same values of democracy and human rights,” said Austrian Ambassador to Indonesia and Timor-Leste, Thomas Loidl, after meeting Prime Minister at Government Palace.
Loidl stressed the importance of strengthening cooperation in the field of health and the development of basic infrastructure.
The diplomat also said that Austria had been a friend of Timor-Leste since the struggle period: “Austria supported the Timorese in their fight for independence.”
Austria and Timor-Leste began diplomatic relations on september 20, 2002. Since then, the two countries have sought to strengthen cooperation through various initiatives and diplomatic exchanges.
Currently, the Austrian Embassy is based in Jakarta, responsible for Indonesia and Timor-Leste and representing the country in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
Austria is also committed to strengthening bilateral relations with Timor-Leste in the political, economic, cultural, and scientific fields.
Timor-Leste’s foreign policy is based on the constitutional principles of sovereignty and independence, under the concept that “there are no allies or enemies, everyone is a friend”.
As a small country with a strategic geographical location, its security depends on establishing solid relations of friendship and cooperation with other countries around the world.
Article 8 of the Constitution states Timor-Leste’s foreign policy should strengthen friendly relations with neighboring countries, regionally and multilaterally, promote the well-being of citizens, and respect human rights.
Timor-Leste currently has diplomatic relations with 134 countries in the fields of defense, security, economy, education, agriculture, fisheries, transport, and telecommunications.
Over the last 20 years, the country has extended its presence on the international stage by establishing 27 embassies and six consular posts to maintain friendly relations with all countries.
Journalist: Jose Belarmino de Sa
Editor: Filomeno Martins