Last modified: 2010-02-19 by antónio martins
Keywords: east timor | timor-leste | timór lorosaʔe | star: 5 points (white) | arrowhead | triangle (black): hoist | leitão (natalino) | law | rdtl | constitution |
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Following the (overwhelming) victory of
FRETILIN in the
parliamentary elections, the
constitutional assembly restored all the symbols from the
1975 independence, including the name,
the flag, the anthem, etc. The hymn is causing some uproar, and will
probably have its lyrics changed, but the version sang in the
independence ceremony was the 1975 one. In the ceremony, by the way,
what was declared was the «restoration of the independence of
the Democratic Republic of East Timor»…
Jorge Candeias, 20 May 2002
In East Timor only the national flag is prescribed
by the Constitution, while all
other national symbols must be described by special laws.
Jan Zrzavy, 17 May 2002
The constitutional assembly finally approved East Timor’s constitution on 22 March 2002. As for the flag, the community consultations on the draft constitution produced some wishes to add the colour green to the flag. However, in the final revision of the constitution’s section 15, only a minor linguistic change was made, a revision that removes the confusing reference to the colour red as «vermelho-púrpura» (purple-red). The constitution is now clear, the colour is simply called «red».
In the final document a change was also made to the official symbolism of the yellow colour. Whereas golden-yellow was said in the draft to represent «the wealth of the country», the official meaning is now that this colour stands for «the traces of colonialism». Black still represents «the obscurantism that needs to be overcome», red is for «the struggle for national liberation» and white symbolizes «peace».
Jan Oskar Engene, 03 May 2002
The East Timor national flag will be raised tomorrow
at the nation’s independence celebrations. (Darwin based manufactor
Ron Strachan who has had made and supplied the new flag for East Timor,
informed me earlier today that eyelets have been placed along the top of
the large 7,2 m × 3,6 m flag so that
it may be raised or displayed horizontally depending upon the conditions
on the day.
Ralph Bartlett, 19 May 2002
The 2002 Corr. Nº2 [pay02]
to the Album [pay00] shows a
1:2 red flag with a five-pointed white star on a black triangle at hoist
superimposed on a yellow triangle, and marks it for all uses:
Željko Heimer, 30 Mar 2003
In Tetum language, the territory is called Timór Loro Saʔe,
meaning «Timor of the rising sun». This is the name adopted for the
new state. In the other two official languages of the country, portuguese and
bahasa indonesian, it’s spelled "Timor-Leste" and
"Timor Timur", respectively (both meaning "east-east"
because "Timor" is a portuguese (or local) corruption of
Jorge Candeias, 29 Oct 1999
From the UN web page:
27 September — The General Assembly will admit Timor-Leste, formerly East Timor, as the 191st Member State of the United Nations today.Interesting, isn’t it? It seems that Timor-Leste will be listed as UN member under its Portuguese, not English name («formerly»!!!), like Cote d’Ivoire and Myanmar.
The law about the national symbols only talks about the size of the flags
[not ratios], check
line (Portuguese language).
J. Patrick Fischer, 09 Jul 2007
The annex to this law shows a very crude solid
back and white image of a ~7:12 flag,
horizontally assymmetrical (upper part noticeably smaller than the rest,
should be a mirror half), and the star misplaced and misshapen. Could this be
a squeezed version of the infamous first draft
of the “new” flag as specified by UNTAET in 2002? A very incorrect,
yet legal design.
António Martins, 07 Sep 2007
Jan Oskar Engene, 03 Mar 2002,
quoting from this document
My translation and comment from the Portuguese language original:
1. The national flag consists of two isosceles »(i.e. symmetrical)« triangles with superimposed bases »(the odd side of each triangle)«, being one triangle black, and as high as one third of the length »of the flag, supposedly,« which is set over the yellow »triangle«, whose height is half of the length of the flag. On the center of the black triangle there is a white five-pointed star, standing for the guiding light. The white star is pointed to the upper left corner of the flag »(meaning supposedly top hoist)«. The rest of the flag is red.
I had expect to find a disposition that a more detailed law would set all remaining details, as constitutions often do, but there is none. The text is almost untouched (comparing with the 1975 version), even in those points it would need some revision — namely in the evident misplacement of the meaning of the star within the geometric details, and not in the symbolics section. The construction prescription, however verbose, is ambiguous as flag laws tend to be — the part about the triangles could be describing St. Lucia instead.
António Martins, 08 Jan 2003
You can find every variation (1:2, 2:3) of all flags in Timor-Leste,
because the law about the national symbols only talks about the size of the
flags [not the ratio].
J. Patrick Fischer, 09 Jul 2007
The 1:2 ratio is not prescribed in the constitution,
only in the UNTAET specifications. (As also the
darker color shades.)
António Martins, 25 Sep 2002
I was in Timor Leste (East Timor, Timor Lorosae) in the end of June 2002;
the flags, made of cotton, are 1:2, maybe because they were produced in
Australia (I heard it here). Paper flags and flags on
T-Shirts are 2:3. They seem to be as official as the 1:2, because in Timorese
parliament, the representatives has paper flags on their table.
J. Patrick Fischer, 07 Aug 2002
Why did all or nearly all the East Timorese flags in
use all these years have been 2:3 or whereabouts?
Jorge Candeias, 26 May 2002
Though the ratio was not fixed in the 1975
constitution, 2:3 has been in consistent use ever since. I cant’
see any valid reason for the new 1:2 ratio — but apparently it is the
law. (I just hope it was not “imposed” by some kind of
manufacturing constraints made in Australia…)
António Martins, 22 May 2002
My point is that the recently re-approved
DRET constitution of
1975 should have caused the approval of the 2:3 ratio established
by tradition based upon that very document. Any contrary opinions
should prove either that there was no such tradition or that the
original constitution prescribed 1:2 after all.
António Martins, 10 Jun 2002
In 1978, Vexilologie 27 [vex]
has presented some details on the East Timorese national flag (i.e. that of
1975). As a source, FB XVI:4
[tfb] is mentioned. According to this
article, the 1975 flag is exaclty the same as the present day, including the
flag ratio 1:2. As an author of the flag is mentioned Natalino Leitão,
and description of the flag is reported as in Article No. 20 of the
Jan Zrzavy, 26 May 2002
The ETAN website says:
The flag that will be hoisted tomorrow night had been hastily designed before November 28 by Natalino Leitao, a Fretilin militant who was to die soon after resisting the full-scale invasion launched 10 days after his flag first flew.J. Patrick Fischer, 23 Sep 2006
The Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste has been admited in the UN. The flag
shown in this
photo is 2:3 as all those hoisted outside the UN
Manuel Gabino, 27 Sep 2002
It’s interesting to note that the very same UN who come up with a
never-heard-of prescription for 1:2 national
flag ratio, now uses a 2:3 flag at its flag yard in New York.
António Martins, 30 Sep 2002
The only variarion was (in 1975-1999)
ever the orientation of the star, mostely depicted pointing up.
Unlike the ratio and
color shades, though, the orientation of
the star (to upper hoist) is specified in the
António Martins, 27 May 2002 and 25 Sep 2002
The stamps issued by East Timor
on 20 May 2002, with the inscription "Independência 2002"
include a $2 value showing this very flag.
Mike Oettle, 26 Jun 2002
Australia Post has designed and printed the first postage stamps
for newly independent East Timor. One
of the four stamps shows the national flag, as also the
First Day Cover.
Ralph Bartlett, 23 May 2002
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