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The Situation on the Ground: For most of the past few centuries, Timor-Leste–also known as

East Timor, a million-person, ethnically distinct swath of the Timor island otherwise part of the Indonesian archipelago–was a colony of Portugal. In the 1970s, Timor sought independence from Portugal but was annexed by neighboring Indonesia in 1975.A 1999 referendum saw East Timor’s population vote for independence, but the past decade and a half have been characterized by bloody civil war, with the country under UN administration. As of 2012, however, UN troops have finally withdrawn from the country, and the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, as the country is formally known, is now stable and embracing its burgeoning identity as an unexpected destination for adventure tourism in Southeast Asia.
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