A letter to my friend Syed Hamid Albar, Malaysia’s former Foreign Minister.

Dear Brother Syed Hamid Albar,

I am speechless. I don’t know what to say, two airplane disasters, one missing, one shot down, more than 400 lives lost in the space of four months!

My dear friend, Syed Hamid Albar, please accept and extend to all Malaysians my personal deepest condolences and solidarity in your national painful mourning.

I know there are no words that can diminish the painful sadness that I know has entered every Malaysian home; and I am not erudite and eloquent enough to craft the best possible prose to express my personal, sincerest sorrow, my utter incomprehension at how our brothers and sisters in Malaysia could have been struck twice by such tragedies over a period of four months.

The stupidity of the conflict in Ukraine, the insensitivity and arrogance of all involved in that insane conflict have brought mourning to so many families, a whole nation many thousands of miles away.

From my humble home in Timor-Leste, a country very much helped by Malaysia to recover from conflict, I send to every Malaysian family my most heartfelt condolences and solidarity. My heartfelt condolences go as well to all families who lost loved ones in this tragedy.

José Ramos-Horta