Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Chile declares state of emergency over Mapuche conflict | Al Jazeera

Chilean President Sebastian Pinera has announced a state of emergency and deployed troops to two southern regions where clashes have broken out between Mapuche Indigenous people and security forces.



The Mapuche are demanding the restoration of their ancestral lands and self-determination.

“We have decided to call a state of exception” in four provinces of the southern regions of Biobio and Araucania and the deployment of troops to help control “the serious disturbance of public order” there, Pinera said in a speech on Tuesday.

The 71-year-old leader said the four provinces in question have seen “repeated acts of violence linked to drug-trafficking, terrorism and organised crime committed by armed groups” and that innocent civilians and police officers have been killed in the violence.

The Mapuche are the largest Indigenous group in Chile. They number about 1.7 million out of the country’s 19-million population and live mainly in the south.

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L'état d'exception a été décrété et l'armée déployée par le président chilien Sebastian Piñera dans deux région méridionales du pays, en proie à de vives tensions avec des Amérindiens mapuche. Cette annonce a été faite le jour même où l'Amérique latine, sur fond de polémiques avec les peuples autochtones, commémore l'arrivée du navigateur espagnol Christophe Colomb en 1492.

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