Many East Timorese say Alkatiri's dismissal of 600 disgruntled soldiers in March was to blame for street battles and gang warfare that left at least 30 people dead and forced nearly 150,000 others to flee their homes.
It was the worst violence since the nation voted for independence from Indonesia seven years ago, according to the AP.
As news of Alkatiri's decision spread, thousands of demonstrators drove through the main streets of Dili, banging drums and cans and shouting "Viva Timor Leste!" At the waterfront site where they have rallied since last Tuesday, young men danced in the street, their arms around each other's shoulders.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has refused to go to the 77th UN General Assembly in September