President Jose Ramos Horta is co-recipient of the 1996 Nobel Peace Prize for his non-violent work towards achieving East Timor’s independence from Indonesia. He was President of East Timor from 20 May 2007 to 20 May 2012, the second since independence from Indonesia. He is currently the United Nations’ special Representative and Head of the United Nations Integrated PeacebuildingOffice in Guinea-Bissau (UNIOGBIS ). His remarks focused on the Zones of Peace program which places activists in areas of past conflict where they can work to implement human rights, nonviolence, literacy, micro finance, and other building blocks to peace in small regions devastated by conflict.
"If those in power, wherever we are, whichever country but also at whatever level in society
that we are leaders, began working together - we would eliminate abject poverty, and ensure that poverty becomes history in twenty years from now. It's a moral duty of any of us as human beings."
- José Ramos-Horta
A founding father of the first new democracy of the millennium.
In exile for 24 years, he was the lone voice of his people, the people of Timor-Leste (East Timor) as they suffered one of the most brutal occupations of the last century. After leading his country to independence, he served as the President of the century’s newest democracy.