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Ramos-Horta presents medals to Defence Force personnel

His Excellency President of the Republic, Dr Jose Ramos-Horta awards the New Zealand General Service medal to Wing Commander Alison Wells
His Excellency President of the Republic, Dr Jose Ramos-Horta awards the Timor-Leste Solidarity medal to Wing Commander Alison Wells (image courtesy of the Australian Defence Force).

25 May 2010

On 20 May President José Ramos-Horta bestowed medals on 170 New Zealand Defence Force personnel in recognition of their contribution to the country's independence.

The ceremony was held at Nicolau Lobato Presidential Palace in Dili, and participated in by New Zealand's Governor-General Anand Satyanand, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ameerah Haq, East Timorese Defence Force [F-FDTL] Commander, Major-General Taur Matan Ruak, and other State leaders of Timor-Leste.

President Ramos-Horta said that the medals were an accolade for the New Zealand Defence Force, who joined INTERFET [the International Force for East Timor] to promote security in the region in 1999.

"Today we bestow medals to the International Stabilisation Force (ISF) from New Zealand and it is an accolade for their contribution to Timor-Leste to keep security in the country," President Ramos-Horta said.

Sir Anand Satyanand said the New Zealand Defence Force would continue to maintain security in the country, but it would depend on the security situation in Timor-Leste and the agreement signed with the United Nations.

[This article was produced by the Open Source Centre in Timor-Leste]

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