Yet, this tiny nation is slowly recovering from 25 years of occupation by the Indonesians who invaded in 1975 murdering more than 100,000 people – as Australian Prime Minister Gough Whitlam turned his back on the invasion of the island nation; 16 years later hundreds more were slaughtered in the 1991 Dili massacre as the world once again stood by…
Finally, in 1999, after a vote for independence and the death of hundreds more East Timorese citizens, at the hands of TNI Militia, Australian led INTERFET troops stopped the carnage and removed the Indonesian backed TNI from East Timor.
Ten years on from independence and East Timor is finally gaining its feet.
Whilst most families live on less than $80 a month… and there are hundreds of orphans missing out on government aid, the East Timorese are a proud and resilient people, determined to carve out a future for themselves… both young and old.
East Timor is finally on the road to recovery…
(East Timor – Road to Recovery, January 2011)
Photographer(s): Ted McDonnell