East Timor - Science and technology

There was no university in East Timor under the Portuguese. The Universitas Timor Timur (UNTIM) was established in 1986 under Indonesian rule. By 1998/99, it had nearly 4,000 students in three main faculties—agriculture, social and political sciences, and education and teacher training. The Indonesian government closed the UNTIM following the April 1999 demonstrations demanding an independence referendum. The Polytechnic in East Timor had technical courses based in Becora and at a campus in Hera; it provided courses in electrical and mechanical engineering, civil construction, and accountancy. The education system was a target for destruction by the Indonesian military and their militias. The UNTIM and Polytechnic buildings in Dili and Hera were looted and burned. A new university was established by former UNTIM and Polytechnic staff and students, without funding from UNTAET. In September 2000, the government allotted $1.3 million to the university from East Timor's education budget. The National University of East Timor (Universidade Nacional Timor Lorosae—UNTL) opened for classes on 27 November 2000. There are five faculties: agriculture, political science, economics, education and teacher training, and engineering. All new students follow a course including human rights, ethics, philosophy of science, and Timorese history.

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