In 2002, Timor-Leste became the first new nation of the 21st century. From that moment, those who fought for independence have faced a challenge even bigger than shaking off Indonesian occupation: running a country of their own. With nearly 40 percent of the country’s population living below the international poverty line, Timor Leste certainly had its share of challenges in building a nation from scratch. So how do they deal with a sudden influx of money from oil?

Author and Politics and International Relations expert Gordon Peake spent four years in East Timor. He’s now written a detailed memoir of their struggle to deal with sudden riches and extraordinary poverty. Beloved Land – stories, struggles, and secrets from Timor Leste is published by Scribe.

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