Ramos Horta in Darwin for treatment
Posted 2 hours 30 minutes ago
Updated 1 hour 40 minutes ago
East Timor's President Jose Ramos Horta has been admitted to Royal Darwin Hospital for treatment to wounds he sustained in an attack at his home this morning.
He was shot in the arm and stomach after fugitive rebel leader Alfredo Reinado launched a pre-dawn raid on his home in the capital Dili.
Mr Ramos Horta arrived on a Careflight plane and was driven under police escort to Royal Darwin Hospital.
Also with him on the flight was his sister Rosa Karrascalao. She was led into the hospital by staff.
Mr Ramos Horta appeared heavily sedated as he was wheeled in. He is being assessed and will then be admitted into the intensive care unit.
The hospital has confirmed two bullet wounds but cannot add any more at this stage.
It is also understood his mother is in Darwin.
East Timor Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao has confirmed that Reinado was behind this morning's attack.
He confirmed that Reinado was shot dead during the raid and that he was also attacked by an armed group but was not injured.
Mr Gusmao said the attacks were an attempt on democracy, but he was determined not to let East Timor become a failed state.
He described the act as cowardly and said the perpetrators must be punished.
Mr Gusmao said the Government would meet again with security leaders this afternoon to further discuss the situation.
Government sources have confirmed that no arrests have been made, but local and international forces are working together to catch the perpetrators.
Vice-President of Parliament Vincente Gutterus has been appointed to act in the role of President until Mr Ramos Horta recovers.
Earlier Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said he was shocked by the attack on Mr Ramos Horta and announced that more Australian troops would be sent to the country.
Mr Rudd reinstated Australia's close ties with East Timor and announced he will visit the country later this week.
"What we had apparently are coordinated attacks aimed at assassinating the democratically-elected leadership of East Timor [who are] a close friend and partner of Australia," he said.
"For there to be a coordinated attempt to assassinate the democratically-elected leadership of a close neighbour and friend of Australia's, is a deep and disturbing development.
"This Government, the Australian Government, will stand resolutely with the democratically-elected government of East Timor at this time of crisis."
Mr Rudd also announced the Federal Cabinet National Security Committee has agreed to the East Timorese Government's request for more help and will send up to 70 more police to East Timor etc etc .