World Bulletin/News Desk
The party of Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao has won East Timor's parliamentary election, but was short of a majority, provisional results showed on Sunday, raising the prospect of a coalition government in Asia's youngest nation.
With all the ballots counted from Saturday's poll, the National Council of Timorese Resistance (CNRT) party led by Gusmao, a former guerrilla leader, had 36.7 percent of the vote, election commission official Tomas Cabral said.
The opposition Fretilin Party, also a key player in securing independence from Indonesia, scored 29.9 percent. The Democratic Party lay third with 10.3 percent, placing it in a key position in any bid to form a government.
"The result makes us even more curious about who would form the government," said Antonio dos Reis, a veteran independence fighter. "But for me, these parties should unite and form a united government so that we can start developing this country."
With negotiations on a coalition almost certainly ahead, voters huddled around radios to hear the latest tallies, while many followed results posted on Facebook and Twitter.
"What we will see in the next two or three weeks is a lot of discussion between CNRT and the Fretilin about the potential arrangements for the foundation of the government," said Silas Everett, country representative for the Asia Foundation.
"The discussions will probably result in either a coalition or a minority government."
The CNRT based its platform on seeking foreign loans to build infrastructure in one of Asia's poorest country with high youth unemployment. Fretilin opposes resorting to loans.
However, Everett said that if the parties could bridge their differences, the resulting coalition would produce a more stable government able to proceed with economic development.
CNRT is open for talks following the result announcement, said Dionisio Babo Soares, the party's secretary general.
The party targeted to win 44 seats but would only get around 30 of the 65-seat parliament based on the result.
Official results are expected on July 17. The government has said a new administration will be formed by Aug. 8.
The United Nations, which has said its mission will end in December, lauded Saturday's election as peaceful and orderly.
Al-Qaeda linked group fleeing intensified government military operations following sighting of elusive leader
Infrastructure of Haqqani network, which included improvised explosive device factories, a number of other capacities including communication, has been disrupted
Government denies the bill is aimed at Muslims, estimated to make up about 5 percent of the population
German foreign minister calls for Pakistan and Afghanistan to work together in battling militants
Police are hunting for a 26-year-old Thai woman and a foreign man in his 40s after a weekend search on a property in the Min Buri district
Two leaders reaffirmed their commitment to the efforts of the international community in the fight against international terrorism
Former Taliban leader's death was kept limited to very few colleagues who were already informed
Pakistan official says Taliban unlikely to return to negotiations while leadership struggle continues
More than 200 fighters killed in battle to retake strategic southern town
Electoral reform group that organized weekend rally hopes Sunday attendance will match protest’s alleged peak of 200,000 people
Modi says he will amend the bill to favour farmers so that they do not face financial losses
Police believe detained suspect had several accomplices preparing the attack
The Pakistani defence minister has said that Pakistan will respond if India continues to target civilians. 13 people were killed on Friday after Indian forces opened gunfire across the border on Friday.
Protesters have blocked off the central square with estimates of up to 200,000 people gathering to protest against Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak.
Police raided an apartment used by the man in northern Bangkok on Saturday and discovered possible bomb-making materials, according to a police spokesman
More than an estimated 40,000 gather in Kuala Lumpur for two-day rally to demand resignation of Najib Razak over corruption scandal.