José Ramos-Horta

In exile for 24 years, José Ramos-Horta led his country, Timor-Leste (East Timor) out of one of the most brutal occupations of our time, into the light of day as the millennium’s newest democracy. A Founding Father of his country, he served as Prime Minister and President.

In 2012-2014, Ramos-Horta, acting as Special Representative to the UN Secretary General, brought the African nation of Guinea Bissau out of a military coup, taking the country through two peaceful elections and restoring power to the citizenry.

In 2014 he was asked by the Secretary General to head a High Level Indpendent Panel on the UN Peacekeeping system. The report was delivered to the Secretary General on June 16, 2015.

A renowned diplomat and peacemaker, today he has returned home to Timor-Leste.

Failure is not an option in Paris

An address to the climate change conference in Bangkok, July 3, 2015 I am not a scientist. Scientists have long shared with us incontrovertible evidence pointing to the extremely serious degradation of our common home as a result of human activities. So I will not...

Christianity vs. Islam

Islam is going trough similar convulsions and wars that plagued Christianity centuries earlier when thousands of Christian “heretics” were burned alive on the orders of the Pope or corrupt and despotic bishops. Islam did not experience similar convulsions in that...

Ramos-Horta: Repression in the Maldives

José Ramos-Horta and Benedict Rogers write for the Wall Street Journal on the arrest of an opposition leader and the political backsliding in the archipelago nation of the Maldives.  On Feb. 22, Maldives police arrested the country’s former president, Mohamed Nasheed,...

Charlie Hebdo: Moderate Muslims Must Speak Out

This article was cross-posted on The Huffington Post.  The barbaric terrorist attacks against the staff of the Paris satirical paper Charlie Hebdo come in the wake of other murderous assaults against innocent pedestrians in the streets of France in recent weeks. For...

October 16: A UN Vote to Watch

Update: We are happy to report that on October 16 “little” New Zealand won one of five two-year seats on the United Nations Security Council. Nobel Peace Prize winner José Ramos-Horta had been in New York for two weeks raising his voice for the need for...

José Ramos-Horta: A Personal Tribute to Madiba

Nobel Peace Laureates were to be gathering in South Africa in the second week of October as guests of our revered colleague and brother Archbishop Desmond Tutu and former President Frederik DeKlerk. The gathering, an annual event, to be held in Cape Town, was meant as...

New Zealand: Time for a Small Country on the UN Security Council

I believe that few people could name more than five members of the UN Security Council. The U.S., Russia and China certainly. Think hard and you would probably add in the United Kingdom and — maybe — France, as the countries who hold the power of...

Rohingya: Myanmar’s Proving Ground

by Muhammad Yunus and José Ramos-Horta One of the fundamental challenges of a democracy is how to ensure the voice of the majority does not trample the essential rights of the minority. In the founding of the United States this was addressed by the Bill of Rights,...

Ramos-Horta appointed UN envoy to Guinea-Bissau

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has appointed former Timorese President and Nobel Peace Prize laureate José Ramos-Horta as the new United Nations envoy to Guinea-Bissau. Mr. Ramos-Horta, who is also the Chairman of the Advisory Board for TheCommunity.com, succeeds...

Benghazi Was Not the Beginning of the End

Nobel Peace Prize winner and Chairman of TheCommunity.com’s Advisory Board José Ramos-Horta puts some perspective on events in the Middle East. I share the civilized world’s revulsion at the destruction being wreaked by anti-US demonstrators in the Middle...

Ramos-Horta: Advice for Syrian Rebels

Nobel Peace Prize winner and Chairman of TheCommunity.com’s Advisory Board, President José Ramos-Horta offers his perspective to Syria’s freedom fighters. Just four decades ago, at the height of the Cold War, Timor-Leste (known to many as East Timor) was nearly...

After Rio +20: Asia Should Lead in Sustainable Development

We gathered in Rio from 190 countries, to review what we have done since the historic Earth Summit in Rio in 1992 and what our world should look like in the coming decades. There was no cause for celebration and much to regret and fear as we continue to lack vision...

East Timor’s long transition to democracy

Over the last ten years I have had the opportunity to travel to East Timor on five different occasions, to have made many friends there, and to have worked on a fairly regular basis with José Ramos-Horta, one of this new democracy’s “founding...

Ramos-Horta: The US should avoid being entangled in civil war in Libya

by Jose Ramos-Horta Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and President of Timor-Leste While I have welcomed the United Nations Security Council Res. 1973 on the imposition of a no-fly zone in Libya as a means to protect civilians, I have advised our friends to avoid being...

Building Democracy Salon

In February, 2009, TheCommunity.com co-hosted a salon with Nobel Laureate and President of East Timor Jose Ramos-Horta to introduce the Zones of Peace program to the Hollywood community. At the private salon, at the home of actress and human rights activist Anne...

Jose Ramos-Horta on the Taliban

Nobel Laureate and President of East Timor writes that the creation of a power sharing government in Afghanistan, one that includes the Taliban, is the only hope for a lasting peace in the country. In a recent article on the Wall Street Journal, he says the new...

Jose Ramos-Horta on Non-Violence

From 1974 to 1999, the small island of East Timor suffered one of the most brutal occupations in history. Under the Indonesian military, torture and disappearances were commonplace. Women were forcibly sterilized and taken as sex slaves. Entire villages were...