Constitution of East Timor

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Coat of arms of East Timor.svg
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Timor Leste

The Constitution of East Timor entered into force on 20 May 2002, and was the country's first constitution after it gained independence from Portugal in 1975 and from Indonesia, which invaded East Timor on December 7, 1975 and left in 1999 following a UN-sponsored referendum.

The Constitution was drafted by the Constituent Assembly elected for this purpose in 2001. Pursuant to an UNTAET regulation, the constitution did not need support in a referendum, but entered into force on the day of independence of East Timor after it was approved by the assembly.

There are two versions of the Constitution, one in each of the country's official languages, Tetum and Portuguese.

The Constitution consists of seven parts, namely:

  • I. Fundamental principles
  • II. Fundamental rights, duties, liberties and guarantees
  • III. Organisation of political power (including the provisions about the three branches of government)
  • IV. Economic and financial organisation
  • V. National defence and security
  • VI. Guarantee and revision of the Constitution
  • VII. Final and transitional provisions

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