|Subject: AP: East Timor PM Sends Bin Laden
East Timor PM Sends Bin Laden Message
The Associated Press Tuesday, December 26, 2006; 4:39 AM
DILI, East Timor -- East Timor's prime minister urged Osama bin Laden to "extend his love" to Christians and Europeans and give up violence in a Christmas message broadcast around the world by the British Broadcasting Corp.
BBC radio invited Jose Ramos-Horta and other world leaders and personalities to send a seasonal message to an individual or a group of their choosing.
"I have no illusions that my message will achieve any change, but I thought that here I had a chance that Osama bin Laden would listen and maybe, just maybe, my message would touch his conscience," Ramos-Horta said in a statement Tuesday about the reasons for his choice.
Ramos-Horta won a Nobel Peace Prize for his nonviolent resistance to the Indonesian occupation of his tiny homeland, which won its independence in 1999 in a U.N.-sponsored ballot.
In his message broadcast on Dec. 23 on the BBC's world service, he said that East Timor had been invaded by mostly Muslim Indonesia and several of his brothers and sisters were killed.
"Yet I do not hate one single Muslim, I do not hate one single Indonesian," he said. "That's the only difference between you and me, my brother Osama bin Laden."
He urged bin Laden to extend the same love he feels toward the Palestinians to Europeans and Christians.
"You will then win them over that way, more than through hatred and violence," he said.