East Timor Prime Minister resigns

Monday, June 26, 2006

Mari Alkatiri

The East Timorese Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri has resigned from his position. He cited the growing violence and the threat by President Xanana Gusmão to resign if he did not.

"I am assuming my own share of responsibility for the crisis affecting our country, I am determined not to contribute to any deepening of the crisis," said Mr Alkatiri.

The news of the Prime Minister's imminent departure comes after the Foreign Minister, Jose Ramos Horta, a former Nobel Peace Prize winner, resigned from his position earlier in the week stating he could not work with Alkatiri. He resigned by means of an SMS text message to Prime Minister Alkatiri.

The resignation was greeted by cheers and drum beats by thousands in celebration. Around 200 buses and vans drove through East Timor's capital city of Dili with their horns sounding. Alkatiri is widely blamed for the violence that erupted in Dili in May.

  Wikinews Australia has in-depth coverage of this issue: 2006 East Timor crisis