Díli, 21 September, 2009
Statement by the Prime Minister office - Idul Fitri
On Idul Fitri, as Muslims in Timor-Leste join in prayer to mark the end of the fasting of Ramadan, we are all reminded of the importance of family and friends and the value of unity and tolerance.
Throughout South East Asia and around the world, Idul Fitri is a time of festivity and celebration. It is also an opportunity for us all to reinforce our bonds of respect and friendship and to embrace different traditions, cultures and religions.
On this special day, Muslims and non-Muslims alike can all reflect on and commit to the pursuit of peace and solidarity.
Idul Fitri is also a time of forgiveness. During Idul-Fitri, Muslims will ask for forgiveness for any wrongdoings they have committed in the past year. A ritual common to many religions and beliefs, but one that can be re-confirmed on this day by us all, and with good will in our hearts we can forgive those that have done wrong against us.
By showing forgiveness, we as a nation that has suffered so much can move on from our troubled past and with dignity we can grow as a People and as a country.
Today, we are also reminded of our close friendship and solidarity with our neighbor Indonesia. As Muslims throughout the vast archipelago of Indonesia enjoy Idul Fitri, we can reflect on the tremendous progress that this country has made. We join today in celebration with our Indonesia friends and commend them on their contribution to building peace, tolerance and respect in our region.
Today, we join in prayer and celebration with our Muslim brothers and sisters. I encourage all Timorese to embrace the spirit of Idul Fitri by showing peace to your neighbors, solidarity to your friends and forgiveness in your hearts.