Jailed Montreal student released from Philippine jail

A 24-year-old University of Montreal student is returning to Canada, after she was arrested in Manila on Friday night for participating in a July 22 anti-government protest.

Kim Chatillon-Meunier was arrested Friday night at Manila airport

Kim Chatillon-Meunier was arrested Friday night for her participation in a July 22 anti-government protest in Manila, Philippines. (Facebook)

Montreal student Kim Chatillon-Meunier is on her way home after a brief stint in a Philippines jail.

The 24-year-old University of Montreal student was arrested in Manila on Friday night for participating in a July 22 anti-government protest.

Jean-Bruno Villeneuve, spokesman for Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada, and a Facebook page set up to support her release have confirmed that Chatillon-Meunier is on a flight from Manila to Vancouver.

"I'm on my flight, direct to Vancouver with Philippines Airlines. I could never thank you enough for your help and I will always remember it," read a comment posted to Facebook by the page's administrator, said to be from the young woman herself.

Chatillon-Meunier was attempting to board a plane to Hong Kong at the time of her arrest. Her boyfriend, ÉmileKinley-Gauthier, said Saturday that she was on her way home when she was taken into custody by Bureau of Immigration officers.

Kinley-Gauthier said he and Chatillon-Meunier took part in a rally on July 22, the day Philippine President Benigno Aquino delivered his state-of-the-nation address. They were just observing, he said.

A number of anti-government protests broke out in Manila that day. Several were deemed illegal, because their requests for permits had been denied by Manila's municipal administration. Isolated clashes broke out between demonstrators and police, resulting in several dozen injuries. 

Kinley-Gauthier left the Philippines on Aug. 1 without any problems, he said.

Chatillon-Meunier had been working with women living in an impoverished area in Manila on an internship funded by Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada.


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