Subject: LUSA: Gusmão to meet incoming US state secretary during Washington trip

East Timor: Gusmão to meet incoming US state secretary during Washington trip

Dili, Nov. 29 (Lusa) - President Xanana Gusmão of East Timor begins an official visit to America at the weekend, during which he will meet Secretary of State-designate Condoleezza Rice and heads of international financial institutions, an official said.

Gusmão is due in the US from Dec. 4-8 and will also hold meetings with directors of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, the official in the Timorese presidency announced Sunday.

During his trip, the Timorese leader will receive the W. Averell Harriman Democracy Award from the National Democratic Institute (NDI).

The award has been made in recognition of Gusmão's pivotal role in the organization of Dili`s 1999 independence ballot and his continuing efforts to consolidate democracy in the world`s youngest nation, the Timorese official said.

Gusmão travels to Washington from Bangkok, after attending a meeting of Southeast Asian leaders.

He will return to Timor Dec. 12 via Japan, after meetings with Tokyo`s prime minister, Enzo Koizumi, and Foreign Minister Nobutaka Machimura, said the official.

EL/CJB Lusa

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