|Subject: AFP: ETimor sets up first national
AFP 31 Jul 2007
ETimor sets up first national park
Dili - East Timor has formally set aside 123,600 hectares (305,400
acres) of land and sea to create the nation's first national park, the
acting prime minister's office said Tuesday.
The Nino Konis Santana National Park incorporates the entire eastern
tip of East Timor, and "aims to conserve a rich and extensive
natural, cultural and historical heritage," the office said in a
The protected area comprises 68,000 hectares of land and 55,600
hectares of sea. It covers one of the largest remaining intact tropical
lowland and monsoon rainforests in the region and extensive coral reefs,
The park is to be jointly managed by the government and local
communities, with assistance from Birdlife International and the
Australian state of New South Wales' Department of Environment and Climate
Change, the office said.
Nino Konis Santana was a commander of Falantil, the armed wing of the
movement that fought for independence from Indonesia, and was born in the
village of Tutuala within the park.
The park is recognised by the World Conservation Union.
Continuously occupied for more than 40,000 years, the area is rich in
archaeological heritage and has many sites from the colonial Portuguese
era and World War II Japanese occupation periods, the office added.
East Timor became independent in 2002 and despite rich deposits of oil
and gas it remains one of the world's poorest nations.
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