Dili (dēˈlē) [key], city (2002 est. pop. 49,900), capital of East Timor. on the N coast of Timor, on Ombai Strait. Dili is the largest city and chief port and commercial center of East Timor. Soap, perfume, and pottery are produced, and coffee is processed. In World War II, Dili was occupied by the Japanese from Feb., 1942, until end of the war. Much of the city was destroyed in the violence following the 1999 vote for East Timorese independence. The Univ. of East Timor is there.