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The repression perpetrated by Sebastian Piñera’s administration in Chile against several Mapuche communities in the region of Araucania has resulted in multiple solidarity actions and expressions at international level. One of them is the Latin American Coordination of Rural Organizations, CLOC – Via Campesina.
CLOC points out that with the militarization of Mapuche regions in Chile, the criminalization and persecution of this native people deepens, violating human rights and international regulations.
In addition, the “anti-terrorist” law that serves as an excuse for the militarization of Araucania “violates the most basic state of law principles” whose origin dates from over five centuries ago, of which “130 years correspond to the Chilean state”.
Early this month, the fire in a school of the poorest region of Chile resulted in Piñera’s neoliberal administration sending strong contingents of armed forces and the explicit promotion of “security guards” for landowners. Two of these landowners were killed in the fire, but the Mapuche organizations denied having any responsibility, and pointed out that the fire was started by agitators that want to cause the state to be violent with communities.
From Temuco, 600 km South of Santiago, Piñera announced a strong operation including 400 police officers, which turned the territory into the land with the highest concentration of armed forces in the country if we take into account the number of inhabitants. In addition, four new bulletproof cars and a second exploration helicopter were sent.
CLOC also called the attention to the danger suffered by hundreds of Mapuche families in response to the atmosphere of impunity present in the region. “That is why CLOC would like to express its solidarity with the Mapuche people, with their organizations, communities, with the political prisoners and their families and the rejection to the repression policies of the Chilean government”, reads a press release by the continental networks with several member organizations in Chile.
At the same time, they demand the implementation of Convention 169 of the International Labor Organization (ILO) that establishes the need of prior, free and informed consultations before the installation of projects in territories of native peoples. They also demand the release of the Mapuche political prisoners that are isolated in Chilean prisons and they reject the Anti-terrorist Law.
Lonko Mapuche Juana Calfuno expressed her condolences to the relatives of the couple killed and demanded the Chilean President to end the harassment against the communities that are under siege by the police, and take the Mapuche mothers who suffer daily repression, the injured and arrested young people and the children traumatized by the police violence into account".
“(… the world is witness of the injustice his administration and the Chilean State is causing and have been causing during 130 years. As authority of my people, I cannot help mentioning these injustices because I’ve suffered them and still suffer them”, said Calfunao, according to an open letter published in Servindi.
La oposición a la minería debe entenderse como la lucha por los derechos que esa actividad no respeta, pues “cada derecho que se le otorga a una empresa, es un derecho que se le resta a una comunidad”, asegura el coordinador del Observatorio de Conflictos Mineros de América Latina (OCMAL), César Padilla.
En Argentina un joven está desaparecido por la represión estatal a una protesta mapuche; en Guatemala indígenas denuncian la violación del Convenio 169 de la OIT. Viajamos también a Costa Rica, Honduras y Venezuela, por otras demandas y agresiones a los pueblos.
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