Area

14,609 sq km (5641 sq miles).



Geography
East Timor makes up the eastern half of the island of Timor (the western half belongs to Indonesia) which is situated off the northern coast of Western Australia. Also included within East Timor is the Oekussi Ambeno enclave on the northwest coast of the island, as well as the islands of Ataśro (Pulo Cambing) and Jaco (Pulo Jako). East Timor is mountainous in the interior.



Capital
Dili. Population : 50,800 (estimate 2003).



Government
Republic. Declared full independence 20 May 2002 after the UN Transitional Authority in East Timor (UNTAET) had run the country for nearly 3 years during its transition to independence. Prior to UNTAET, the country had been under Indonesian control since 1975. President : Xanana Gusmao since May 2002. Prime Minister : Mari Alkatiri since May 2002.



Language
Tetum is the main dialect and is the official language along with Portuguese; English is often used for administrative purposes (due to the high numbers of English-speaking relief and UN workers still working in East Timor). More than 30 other languages are also used in East Timor.



Religion
Christian majority with 86 per cent Catholic. Islam and Animist religions are also practised.



Time
Time : GMT + 8., Electricity : 220 V, 50 Hz. Electricity supplies may be erratic with many power cuts.



Population
Population : 737,811 (2001)., Population density : 50.5 per sq km.



Communications
Telephone : International calls can be made from and to Dili. The code for Dili is 390.

Mobile Telephone : Coverage provided by Timor Telecom International in and around Dili and other main urban areas. International roaming agreements are stilll being set up but cannot be relied upon as yet. In some parts of the country, however, telephone communication may still only be possible with satellite telephones.

Fax :
Facilities exist in Dili in major organizations and hotels.

Internet : Facilities are not generally available to the public at the present time.

Post : A limited postal service does exist.

Press : The Timor Post is published daily in English; Tais Timor is published every fortnight in English.

Radio :
BBC World Service (website : http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice) and Voice of America (website : http://www.voa.gov) can be received. From time to time the frequencies change and the most up-to-date can be found online.

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Information provided by East Timor Tourism Board.

 

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