Members of the Mapuche community demand that the Chilean government restore the land of their ancestors and give them self-determination
Chilean President Sebastian Pinella announced an emergency on Tuesday, deploying troops in two areas in the south where there was a clash between members of the Mapuche community and security forces.
The Mapuche are demanding the restoration and self-determination of their ancestral lands.
In his speech, Piniella said he “decided to call it an exceptional condition” in four states in the southern region of Biobio and Araucania, and decided to deploy troops to control the “serious turmoil of public order and morals” there. Did.
The billionaire right-wing president addressed the country on a controversial national holiday commemorating Christopher Columbus’ “discovery” of the Americas.
Due to the subsequent colonization, it is a historic day that many Aboriginal communities throughout the Americas consider it a disaster.
Innocent civilians and police officers were killed in violence, Pinella, 71, said in four states in question, “repeated acts of violence related to drug trafficking, terrorism, and organized crime by armed groups.” Said that.
Exceptional conditions are initially due to the last two weeks in Biobio and Arauco in the Biobio region, and Malleco and Coting in the Araucanian region.
Chile’s largest Aboriginal community, the Mapuche, has 1.7 million members of the country’s 19 million population and lives primarily in the south.
Their leaders are demanding that they restore land owned by farms and logging companies.
Due to the lack of a solution to the Mapuche demands, militant groups have launched attacks on trucks and private property over the last decade.
One was killed and 17 were injured on Sunday when security forces clashed with protesters marching for Mapuche autonomy in Santiago.
Lucia Damart, a professor at the University of Santiago and a political analyst, criticized Piniella’s decision, saying that the deployment of troops could further intensify the Mapuche conflict.
“The government has failed to come up with effective and fair policies to solve the problems that exist in Araucania,” said Damart, sending troops to the region leading to “increased violence.” He added that there is a possibility.
However, Araucania Governor Luciano Rivas said there was a “very serious security crisis” in the area and supported the deployment of troops.
“Today we are in a very complex situation and police are overwhelmed by groups with large caliber weapons,” Rivas told CNN Chile.
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https://www.taipeitimes.com/News/world/archives/2021/10/14/2003766110 Chile dispatches troops after clash