Subject: AP: Pope receives East Timor's prime minister

Pope receives East Timor's prime minister

The Associated Press

Published: October 27, 2006

VATICAN CITY Prime Minister Jose Ramos-Horta of East Timor met Friday with Pope Benedict XVI, seeking his help in easing tensions in the mainly Roman Catholic nation.

The Vatican gave no details of their talks but before leaving for Rome, Ramos-Horta had said he would give the pope a letter from President Xanana Gusmao asking Benedict to visit the country. The pope is expected to attend the Church's World Youth Day in neighboring Australia in 2008.

Tiny East Timor has been wracked by violence and gang warfare this year.

Pope John Paul II visited East Timor in 1989 when the former Portuguese colony was under Indonesian rule.

Ramos-Horta shared the 1996 Nobel Peace Prize with Bishop Carlos Filipe Ximenes Belo for their resistance to Indonesian rule.

East Timor won independence in 2002.

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