Sae Kani

Timor-Leste

Sae Kani

This photo was taken in the East Timorese capital, Dili.

The three men are former guerrillas who had been in the jungle since they were very young. Now they are learning new skills – carpentry, electronics, building – at the Don Bosco training school. The school also offers emotional support after the traumas of the fighting. These guys are still very proud of having been resistance soldiers, but now they are looking forward to a new life in independent East Timor.

The apathy and ignorance of many of us – and the profitoriented political games of the West – prolonged the suffering of the East Timorese people for far too long. In spite of this, they constantly discuss ways to increase awareness and understanding of their problems.

Despite my ignorance, their patient attitude towards me encouraged me to keep going with photojournalism. They reminded me why I wanted to become a photojournalist in the first place: to be patient and create dialogues in the way I believe in; to make a difference.

Sae Kani comes from Japan but she is currently working from London.

mag cover This article is from the October 2002 issue of New Internationalist.
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