Subject: AN: RI to open cultural center in Timor Leste

06/09/07 21:26

RI to open cultural center in Timor Leste

Batugade, Timor Leste (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian Embassy in Dili will build an Indonesian Cultural Center in Timor Leste`s capital in cooperation with the central government, a spokesman said.

Kiki T. Kusprabowo, counsellor at the embassy, told ANTARA News via phone on Saturday most Timor Leste people were quite able to converse, write and communicate in the Indonesian language.

Thus, he said, an Indonesian cultural center in Dili would not only serve as a place to introduce the Indonesian language but also Indonesian culture comprehensively.

"At present, we continue to communicate and coordinate with Jakarta on this matter," he added.

Since Timor Leste gained independece on May 20 seven years ago, only one country had opened a cultural center in Dili, namely Portugal.

Within its cultural complex, Portugal was displaying exhibits on its culture, many aspects of which were absorbed by the local people.

Officially, or based on its constitution, Timor Leste uses three languges, namely Tetum, Portuguese and English. In various official documents, it is often found that the texts are written in Tetum and Portuguese.

But in daily activities, members of the old and younger generations use the Tetum and Indonesian languages.

Herman da Silva, 26, a Dili resident who once studied at Diponegoro University in Semarang, said over the phone that it was difficult for Timor Leste people to master Portuguese. (*)

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