Statement by Secretary of State John Kerry On the Occasion of Timor-Leste’s Restoration of Independence Day

On behalf of President Obama and the American people, I send my sincere wishes and congratulations to the people of Timor-Leste as you celebrate your 13th anniversary of Independence.

The world rejoices to see Timor-Leste continue developing as a democratic nation. We congratulate you on the recent peaceful government transition, when President Taur Matan Ruak swore in a new administration, with Dr. Rui Maria de Araújo taking the helm as Prime Minister. We applaud Timor-Leste’s commitment to constitutional rule and a pluralistic government.

These are exciting times in Timor-Leste. The hard work and sacrifice of its people have nourished a growing prosperity where access to education, health care, and justice are recognized for their vital sustaining role in society.

Timor-Leste also continues to distinguish itself as an actively-engaged member of the international community, most recently donating generously to assist Nepalese earthquake victims.

We salute the nation of Timor-Leste, a valued friend to the United States, on this anniversary of the independence you fought so bravely to achieve. We look forward to celebrating your continued success and the deepening of our cooperation in the years ahead.