“In victory be magnanimous, never seek to humiliate the adversary; if he is on his knees hold his hands and plead with him to rise up, embrace him; walk halfway and meet the vanquished ones, embrace them, invite them to join in a new enterprise of peace, a new future for all.”

“No one wants to be in opposition. Through education, habits, years, you learn to be in opposition.”

“In some countries, respecting diversity is perceived as undermining the State when in fact we should look at this as wealth.”

Jose Ramos-Horta


José Ramos-Horta

President,Timor-Leste 2007-12
Prime Minister 2006-07






What Obama Needs to Tell Myanmar’s Leader



View GLF Members Map
Select Country to view GLF Members
Close Map
Global Map Algeria Armenia Australia Austria Canada Chile Côte d'Ivoire Egypt Finland France Guatemala India Indonesia Jamaica Jordan Latvia Lebanon Malta Mauritius New Zealand Peru Philipines Rwanda Senegal South Africa Spain Sri Lanka Sweden Switzerland Tanzania Timor-Leste Turkey USA USA United Kingdom Uruguay
Back to Map

Jaswant Singh

Foreign Minister, India 1998-2002
Defence Minister, India 2001
Finance Minister, India 1996, 2002-04

Back to Map

Marzuki Darusman

Attorney General, Indonesia 1999 to 2001

Back to Map


Prime Minister, Jamaica 1992-2006

Back to Map

His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan bin Talal

Crown Prince of Jordan 1965 - 99

Back to Map

Vaira Vike-Freiberga

President of Latvia, 1999 – 2007

Back to Map

Cassam Uteem

President, Mauritius 1992-2002

Back to Map

Vicente Fox

President, Mexico, 2000-06

New Zealand
Back to Map

Mike Moore

Prime Minister of New Zealand 1990
Director General of the World Trade Organisation 1999-2002

Back to Map

Alvaro de Soto

UN Under-Secretary-General 1999-2007

Back to Map

Fidel Ramos

President, Republic of the Philippines 1992-98

Back to Map

Moustapha Niasse

Prime Minister of Senegal 1983 & 2000-01

Back to Map

Donald Kaberuka

Finance Minister, Rwanda, 1997-2005
President, African Development Bank 2005-2015

South Africa
Back to Map

F.W. de Klerk

President, Republic of South Africa 1989-94

Back to Map

Javier Solana

Secretary General, Council of the European Union 1999-2009
Secretary General, NATO 1995-1999
Foreign Minister, Spain 1992-1995

Sri Lanka
Back to Map

Chandrika Kumaratunga

President, Sri Lanka 1994-2005

Back to Map

Lawrence Gonzi

Prime Minister, Malta 2004-13
Minister of Finance, 2004-08
Minister of Social Policy, 1998-2004

Back to Map

Lakhdar Brahimi

Foreign Minister, Algeria 1991-93
UN Special Adviser to the Secretary-General 2004-05

Back to Map

Armen Sarkissian

Prime Minister, Armenia 1996-97

Back to Map

Kevin Rudd

Prime Minister of Australia, 2007-2010 and 2013
Foreign Minister,  2010-2012

Gareth Evans

Foreign Minister, Australia 1988-96
President and CEO of the International Crisis Group 2000-09

Back to Map

Wolfgang Schüssel

Austria, Federal Chancellor 2000 – 2007
Foreign Minister 1995 - 2000

Back to Map

Herve Latsous

Herve Latsous

United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations 2011 - 2017

Back to Map

Joe Clark

Prime Minister, Canada 1979-80
Secretary of State for External Affairs 1984-1991

Louise Fréchette

UN Deputy Secretary-General, 1998 – 2006

Back to Map

Ghassan Salamé

UN Special Advisor to Secretary-General, 2003-06
Lebanese Minister of Culture, 2000-03

Back to Map

Carl Bildt

Prime Minister, Sweden 1991-94
Foreign Minister 2006-14
UN Special Envoy to the Balkans 1999-2001

Back to Map

Micheline Calmy-Rey

President of the Swiss Confederation 2007 and 2011

Pascal Couchepin

President, Swiss Confederation 2003 & 2008

Kaspar Villiger

President, Swiss Confederation 1995 & 2002

Back to Map

Salim Salim

Prime Minister of Tanzania, 1984 – 1985
Secretary-General of the OAU, 1989 – 2001

Back to Map

José Ramos-Horta

President, Timor-Leste 2007-12

Prime Minister 2006-07

Back to Map

Hikmet Çetin

Deputy Prime Minister, Turkey, 1978-79 and 1995
Foreign Minister, 1991-94

Back to Map

Chester A. Crocker

US Assistant Secretary for African Affairs 1981-89

Tom Daschle

US Senator 1987-2005
Member of the US House of Representatives 1979-1987
Majority Leader of the US Senate

Donald F. McHenry

US Ambassador to the UN 1979-81

Thomas R. Pickering

US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs 1997-2000
US Ambassador to the UN 1989-92

United Kingdom
Back to Map

Catherine Ashton

Catherine Ashton

High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy 2009-14
Vice President of the European Commission 2009-14

Lynda Chalker

Minister of Overseas Development, UK 1989-97

Back to Map

Enrique Iglesias

Foreign Minister, Uruguay, 1985-1988
President of the Inter-American Development Bank 1988-2005

Back to Map

Juan Gabriel Valdés

Minister for Foreign Affairs, Chile, 1999
Chilean Ambassador to the UN, 2000-03

Côte d'Ivoire
Back to Map

Amara Essy

Foreign Minister, Côte d'Ivoire 1990-2000
Secretary General, OAU 2001
Chairman, AU Commission 2002-3

Back to Map

Mohamed ElBaradei

Director General,  International Atomic Energy Agency 1997-2009
Interim Vice President, Egypt 2013

Back to Map

Elisabeth Rehn

UN Under-Secretary-General, SRSG in Bosnia and Herzegovina 1998-99
UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights 1995-97
Finnish Minister of Defence 1990-95 and Equality Affairs 1991-95

Back to Map

Eduardo Stein

Vice President, Guatemala, 2004-08
Foreign Minister 1996-2000


José Ramos-Horta - Biographical Information

President, Timor-Leste 2007-12
Prime Minister 2006-07


Public Career

José Ramos-Horta served as President of Timor-Leste between 2007 and 2012, having served as Prime Minister and Minister of Defence from 2006 to 2007 and as Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation from 2002 to 2006.

Between 1975 and 1999, he was Minister for Foreign Affairs and Information in the first government of Timor-Leste which was proclaimed in December 1975 following the country’s Unilateral Declaration of Independence. He was also Representative and Spokesperson for the Resistance during this time.

José Ramos-Horta began his career in journalism in 1969 as co-founder of FRETILIN, the Revolutionary Front for the Independence of Timor-Leste. In 1975, after more than 400 years of Portuguese occupation, FRETILIN proclaimed independence and established the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste. Having been appointed as FRETILIN’s Minister for External Affairs and Information, he was asked to travel overseas to gain international support for the new country and left Timor-Leste for New York on 4 December that year. Three days later, Indonesia invaded and occupied the island.

Between 1975 and 1999, José Ramos-Horta travelled extensively lobbying governments and creating networks of supporters for the cause of his people. In 1990 he settled in Sydney, Australia, and founded the Diplomacy Training Program in the University of New South Wales, where he lectured on the United Nations system and created and directed UN Security Council models.

In December 1996 José Ramos-Horta and Bishop Carlos Belo were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for “their work towards a just and peaceful solution to the conflict in Timor-Leste”.

In 1999 José Ramos-Horta returned to his homeland after almost 25 years in exile to contribute to the negotiations that led to Timorese independence. As a Cabinet Member of the United Nations Transition Administration for East Timor (UNTAET) from 2000 to 2002, he helped to bring about peaceful elections for the country’s new Parliament and President in 2001 and 2002 respectively. When a crisis in 2006 nearly plunged the country into political turmoil he successfully stabilized the situation by securing the intervention of foreign peacekeeping forces.

José Ramos-Horta mediated numerous disputes and conflicts in Timor-Leste over more than 10 years, ranging from youth gang violence and land disputes to crises within the military, police and political elites. He conceived several initiatives, including the "Dili, City of Peace" Campaign, the Dili International Marathon, the Tour de Timor and anti-poverty initiatives.

During his years in exile he completed the Executive Program for Leaders in Development at Harvard University (1998) and was a senior associate member of St. Anthony College, Oxford, England (1987). He received an MA in Peace Studies from Antioch University, Ohio (1984) and attended and completed courses in Public International Law at The Hague Academy of International Law and in International Human Rights Law at The International Institute of Human Rights, Strasbourg (1983). He has also completed an Advanced Diploma in Public Relations at the Centro Internacional de Marketing between 1970 and 1974.

José Ramos-Horta has received numerous honorary doctorate degrees from universities in Australia, Japan, Thailand, the Philippines, the Republic of Korea, Portugal, Brazil and the USA. He was a Visiting Professor with Ewa Women’s International University in Seoul from 2007 to 2012.

José Ramos-Horta’s mediation work has included negotiating with hostage takers in Colombia in 1998 when he successfully secured the release of 15 hostages held by the Ejercito de Liberación Nacional (ELN). He was also Special Envoy of the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP) which mediated the conflict in Guinea-Bissau in 2003 and 2004.

In addition to the Nobel Peace Prize, José Ramos-Horta has received numerous other awards including the Order of Timor-Leste (2012), the Order of Dom Boaventura (2006) and others from Portugal, Brazil, Cuba and Cape Verde.

His books and other writings include: FUNU: The Unfinished Saga of East Timor (1987), Timor-Leste: Amanha em Dili, (1994), A Matter of Principle: Humanitarian Arguments for War in Iraq, edited by Thomas Cushman (2005) and The Lost World of Timor-Leste (2010).

José Ramos-Horta has also written extensively on international affairs for the International Herald Tribune, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post and The Daily Beast/Newsweek among others.

Activity after Public Politics

José Ramos-Horta is currently a Member of the Council of State, an Advisory Body to the President of the Republic of Timor-Leste.

In 2013-14 he served as Under-Secretary-General, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General and Head of the UN Integrated Peace Building Mission in Guinea-Bissau (UNIOGBIS).

In October 2014 José Ramos-Horta was appointed by UNSG Ban Ki-moon to chair a new High Level Independent Panel on Peace Operations, which will consider a broad range of issues facing peace operations, including the changing nature of conflict, evolving mandates, good offices and peace-building challenges, managerial and administrative arrangements, planning, partnerships, human rights and protection of civilians, uniformed capabilities for peacekeeping operations and performance.

José Ramos-Horta has lectured extensively in Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Portugal, France, Germany and the US. He is a Doctorate candidate at the Universidade do Minho in Braga, Portugal, has been a Visiting Professor at the University of South Wales since 1996 and has been a Distinguished Visiting Professor at Victoria University, Melbourne since 2007.

Besides his mother-tongues of Tetum and Portuguese, José Ramos-Horta is fluent in English, French and Spanish.

Jose Ramos-Horta has been a Member of the Global Leadership Foundation since 2013.

Memberships and Associations

  • Chairman of the Advisory Board for TheCommunity.com
  • Member of the Honorary Advisory Council, Institute for Global Law and Policy at Harvard University
  • Vice-President, Asian Peace and Reconciliation Council