Statement by Ms. Yoriko Kawaguchi, Minister for Foreign Affairs, on the Independence of the Democratic Republic of East Timor

May 20, 2002

  1. Today on May 20, the Democratic Republic of East Timor has become independent. Upon East Timor's independence, I pay great respect to the efforts made by all of its people, express congratulations on their independence, and highly evaluate the efforts made by international organizations and donor countries which have extended cooperation and assistance for the country's independence. Japan expects that the government and people of East Timor, under the leadership of the new President, will firmly collaborate and continue their nation-building efforts toward self-sustainability.

  2. Japan today recognized newly-independent Democratic Republic of East Timor. Mr. Seiken Sugiura, Senior Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs, and Mr. Ramos Horta, Foreign Minister of East Timor, exchanged Notes to establish diplomatic relations between Japan and East Timor in the names of the Foreign Ministers of Japan and East Timor. Following this establishment of diplomatic relations, the Government of Japan has established its embassy in East Timor today.

  3. Japan intends to extend its utmost possible assistance for East Timor's nation-building in cooperation with the international community, and to cooperate with the country to develop future-oriented and amicable, close friendly relations.

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