Ambassador of Timor-Leste to Brunei Marcal Avelino Ximenes delivering his remarks during the 44th Proclamation Day & 17th National Day of Timor-Leste held at The Empire Brunei. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

The Embassy of Timor-Leste yesterday celebrated the 44th Anniversary of the Proclamation of Independence and 17th National Day of Timor-Leste in a joyous cultural occasion at the Indera Samudra Grand Hall, The Empire Brunei.

The event was held to mark the nation’s independence from Portugal in 1975 and sovereignty restoration in 2002 as well as the 17th year friendship between Brunei and Timor-Leste.

Ambassador of Timor-Leste to Brunei Marcal Avelino Ximenes in his opening speech said the sultanate is a true friend of Timor-Leste and thanked the government of His Majesty the Sultan for extending immediate help by joining the INTERFRET Mission since 1999.

Minister of Religous Affairs YB Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Haji Awang Badaruddin (front C), Ambassador of Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, Marcal Avelino Ximenes (front L) and their spouses standing for the national anthems of Brunei and Timor-Leste during the 44th Proclamation Day & 17th National Day of Timor-Leste held at The Empire Brunei. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

“Diplomatic relations between the two countries were established in 2002 and was described as a warm and cordial relationship that has been recorded in history and memories,” he said.

The interaction between the countries, he added, has increased after each party opened its embassies in Dili and Bandar Seri Begawan.

He also hoped that the existing cooperative relations between both are further strengthened towards tourism and that Timor-Leste plans on exploring efforts to operate flights between Bandar Seri Begawan and Dili to further boost air connectivity.

The ambassador added that the countries also worked on important areas such as education, health, transportation, oil and gas as well as in security issues.

Minister of Religous Affairs YB Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Haji Awang Badaruddin and Ambassador of Timor-Leste to Brunei Marcal Avelino Ximenes cutting the cake during the 44th Proclamation Day & 17th National Day of Timor-Leste held at The Empire Brunei. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman
The Le-zeval Group from Timor-Leste performing traditional dances during the 44th Proclamation Day & 17th National Day of Timor-Leste held at The Empire Brunei. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

“In education, Brunei has provided scholarships for postgraduate level studying at Universiti Teknologi Brunei and offers scholarships to East Timorese children to continue their studies in Brunei,” he added.

Moreover, invited guests were entertained with Timor-Leste’s traditional dance performances presented by the country’s own Le-zeval Group who performed the warrior dance dubbed “Dance of the Nations” and the 500 year-old “Tale Bole” dance, among others.

In addition, guests had a glimpse of Timor Leste’s rich strong heritage and vibrant culture through a video documentary highlighting the historical achievements of Timor Leste.

Present at the event was Minister of Religious Affairs Yang Berhormat Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Hj Awg Badaruddin Pengarah Dato Paduka Hj Awg Othman and spouse.

The Le-zeval Group from Timor-Leste performing traditional dances during the 44th Proclamation Day & 17th National Day of Timor-Leste held at The Empire Brunei. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

The Bruneian | BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

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