Subject: Mozambique willing to assist E Timor in defence and security

Received from Joyo Indonesia News

BBC Monitoring International Reports September 18, 2003 Source: Radio Mozambique Antena Nacional, Maputo, in Portuguese 1030 gmt 17 Sep 03

MOZAMBIQUE WILLING TO ASSIST EAST TIMOR IN DEFENCE, SECURITY

Deputy Defence Minister Henrique Banze said in Maputo today that Mozambique would be willing to assist East Timor in the defence and security fields. Banze was speaking during a meeting with East Timorese Home Affairs Minister Rogerio Lobato. Lobato briefed the Mozambican official on the current security situation in East Timor.

Henrique Banze told our correspondent that there have been positive developments in the defence and security relations between the two countries:

(Banze) As a whole we enjoy a sound cooperation with East Timor. We are willing to assist East Timor, but that would depend on the country's real capacities. Obviously, we would have to consider each area separately so as to determine the type of assistance to be provided.

We would be in a position to provide basic military training and assistance in demining operations. East Timor, however, does not have a land mine problem. Once our military structures are effectively organized, we would be able to train noncommissioned officers and corporals. We have the know-how (preceding word in English), which we could apply to specific training programmes.

(Presenter) According to Minister Rogerio Lobato, Mozambique has always provided assistance to East Timor in accordance with its capacities:

(Lobato) Mozambique is a sister country that has never failed to assist us. We have just gained independence. Mozambique has always been keen to provide varied assistance in accordance with is resources.

(Presenter) Also today, Minister Rogerio Lobato met Foreign and Cooperation Minister Leonardo Simao with whom he discussed ways of deepening and strengthening bilateral relations. (passage omitted)


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