Subject: Lusa: E Timor: Justice sector continues to be an aid priority for Portugal

East Timor: Justice sector continues to be an aid priority for Portugal

Dili, Oct. 13 (Lusa) - Justice Minister Domingos Sarmento thanked Portugal Thursday for its aid in setting up East Timor's justice system and urged Lisbon to continue its support beyond the end of the UN mission next May.

"After the exit of UNOTIL, it is important, very important, that Portugal continue to help us in the training of magistrates and judicial personnel, guaranteeing the consolidation of the rule of law and of a civil juridical system", Sarmento said.

The minister made his remarks at a ceremony in Dili during which Portuguese Ambassador João Ramos Pinto offered East Timor a collection of legal reference books.

In response to the minister's appeal, Ambassador Ramos Pinto pledged Portugal would "spare no effort" in cooperation in the justice sector, an area he described as "a fundamental pillar for the sustained development of East Timor".

The ambassador recalled that Dili would soon have its first law school, an institution being set up with aid from Portuguese universities.

Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri specifically asked for Lisbon's help in establishing a law school during an official visit to Portugal last June.



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