Subject: Some East Timor students released following protest
also MPs, human rights activists criticise ETimor student arrests
ABC Radio Australia
East Timor students released following protest
Twenty-one East Timorese students, detained following protests over a government decision to purchase cars for 65 members of parliament, have been release from police detention.
A total of 53 have been arrested since demonstrations began on Monday.
Stephanie March reports from Dili groups of UN and local police waited outside Dili's national university, but the students gathered at the school failed to go ahead with planned protests.
The 21 students arrested Monday appeared in court this morning before being released without charge, however, police say the incident is still being investigated.
They've been told they must inform police of any plans to leave the capital.
Amnesty International and the Fretilin Opposition party had previously called for the students to either be charged immediately, or released from police detention.
UN police told the ABC despite no demonstrations at the University today they are prepared for the possibility of more on Friday.
MPs, human rights activists criticise ETimor student arrests
Student demonstrations are continuing in East Timor with at least 53 students now arrested.
The week-long protests are over a government decision to buy cars for each of the tiny nation's 65 members of parliament.
Radio Australia's Stephanie March reports that those arrested are in police custody and face charges of disobedience, which carries a maximum penalty of six years imprisonment.
Police say the protests at the university are illegal because they are too close to the national parliament.
MP Fernanda Borges believes the students have a right to protest.
"I was hoping with the assistance of the UN there would have been more attempt at talking to the students to convince them that this was not appropriate and find other compromise ways to handle the problem as opposed to just picking them up and arresting them," he said.
The Fretilin opposition party is backing a statement from human rights watchdog, Amnesty International, which calls for the group to either be charged immediately or released.
The Fretilin opposition party is backing Amnesty International's call for the group to either be charged immediately, or released.
They face charges of disobedience, which carries a maximum penalty of 6 years imprisonment.