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East Timor president picks Rui Araujo as new PM

East Timor’s President has confirmed former health minister Rui Araujo as the new Prime Minister of the country, the Government said on Tuesday.

Dr Araujo replaces Xanana Gusmão, who stepped down last week to allow for a younger generation to lead.

Mr Gusmão and his ruling CNRT party recommended that Dr Araujo take the helm even though the politician – a trained medic – is from the opposition Fretilin party.

“The President of the republic accepted the proposal of CNRT, the most voted [for] party at the last legislative elections, which nominated Dr Rui Maria Araujo for the post as Prime Minister,” the Government said in a statement.

It is expected Dr Araujo will be sworn in this week as East Timor’s fifth Prime Minister since it gained independence from Indonesia in 2002.