Subject: Xanana and Ramos-Horta respond to election of Barack Obama
Gabinete do Primeiro Ministro
Dili,5th November 2008
Dear Mr. President-elect,
Allow me, on behalf of the Government of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, to extend to you our heartfelt congratulations on your election as the 44th President of the United States of America.
Your decisive victory is evident of the faith and confidence the American people has placed in you to lead the nation over the next four years to great change and economic prosperity.
Internationally, the United States continues to play a vital role in helping to strengthen democracy and development in developing and post conflict countries. Since 1999, the United States has increasingly contributed to our nation-building and development and I look forward to working with you and your administration, in reinforcing this special relationship and in enhancing the ties of friendship between our two nations and peoples.
I wish you, Mr. President-elect, every success as you prepare to assume the Office of the Presidency of the United States of America.
Please accept, Mr. President-elect, the assurances of my highest consideration and respect,
Kay Rala Xanana Gusmao
Senator Barak Obama
President-elect of the United States of America
Presidência da República
Media Release Dili, 4 November 2008
STATEMENT OF PRESIDENT JOSÉ RAMOS-HORTA ON THE ELECTION OF THE NEW PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
President of the Republic and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, José Ramos-Horta, congratulated today the president-elect of the United States, Barack Obama, and the American people for the historical election of an Afro-American from a humble background to hold office as President of the United States.
President Ramos-Horta said:
The election of Senator Barack Obama is a turning point in American history as it shows that American society has moved away from the racial discrimination and exclusion of the past.
For Afro-Americans and Africans in general, sons and daughters of slaves, the election of Barack Obama is the triumph of freedom and justice, the end of centuries of indignities and humiliation, the liberation of all humanity.
President-elect Barack Obama is a man of outstanding qualities both as a human being and a statesman and I believe he will be a president of the historical stature of a John F. Kennedy, successfully confronting the challenges facing the United States and the world in our time.
While it is obvious that the new American president has to address as a matter of urgency the financial catastrophe provoked by greed, incompetence and irresponsibility of American corporate CEO’s, it is also fundamental that the United States leads the fight against extreme poverty by increasing aid to developing countries, opening up its internal markets and ending agriculture subsidies, as I have stated on a number of occasions.
At the same time, on foreign policy I hope that the new American administration will immediately lift the trade embargo and sanctions on Cuba. The 40 year economic blockade and trade embargo by the world’s superpower against a small island-nation is immoral and politically unwise as it does not forge peaceful changes. The new President must take serious steps to accelerate the resolution of the Palestinian conflict leading to a permanent and viable Palestinian state within the framework of a two-state solution agreed upon by all parties concerned.
The new American president must realize that the era of American and European supremacy is over and should take steps to build a new and stable international framework by inviting China, India, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Brazil, Mexico to join the G8 and by leading the process of reform of the United Nations that would include the expansion of the Security Council with new permanent members such as India, Indonesia and Japan, for Asia, Egypt and South Africa, for Africa, and Brazil and Mexico, for the Americas. These are crucial tests for the new president of the United States.
To president elect Barack Obama, his wife Michelle, their children and the rest of his family and close friends I extend my warm congratulations. I also congratulate the American people for this historical event.
Also, my congratulations to Senator John McCain for his courageous fight as well his integrity and humanity. ENDS.