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REPUBLIC OF CHILE:
REPRESSION AGAINST DEMONSTRATORS

Update info:
5 Nov 2019
Country:
REPUBLIC OF CHILE
Subject:
People Protesting in Chile (They, them, theirs)
Period:
20 Nov 2019
Distribution date:
5 Nov 2019
UA No:
137/2019

Since 18 October, thousands took the streets in Chile in response to a metro fare hike in its capital city. The demonstrations broadened to reflect people’s anger over living costs and inequality. The President decreed a state of emergency, enabling the army to police demonstrations and impose a curfew. Initial accounts report several deaths, massive detentions, and scores of people tortured or ill-treated. We call on the president to address the demands behind the protests and respect the right to peaceful assembly and expression.

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ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Days after the announcement of an increase in public transport fares in Santiago de Chile, Chile’s capital, thousands of people mobilized to demand a freeze on the fee increase, and solutions to a variety of policies that have placed a burden on vast sectors of Chilean society and impacted on their economic, social and cultural rights.
After several violent episodes on the streets, the government decided to suspend the public transportation service and decree a State of Emergency on October 18. The decree called on the National Defence Command to police demonstrations and impose a curfew in the metropolitan area of Santiago and other cities, which took place starting on 19 October. The curfew is still in effect.

The Vice Minister of Interior reported that 15 people have died in violent incidents during the protests throughout the country. On October 21, the local organization National Human Rights Institute (Instituto Nacional de Derechos Humanos, INDH) reports more than 1,400 people detained, including 181 minors, and over 80 persons injured by firearms. They have also recorded countless reports of torture and ill-treatment, among other human rights violations.

On 20 October, President Sebastián Piñera called political parties to agree on a new law that would halt the increase in public transportation fares, the law was approved on 22 October. Demonstrators and social movements are calling for significant measures to address the underlying factors of inequality, and protests continue.

PREFERRED LANGUAGE TO ADDRESS TARGET: Spanish and English. You can also write in your own language.

PLEASE TAKE ACTION AS SOON AS POSSIBLE UNTIL: 20 November 2019
Please check with the Amnesty office in your country if you wish to send appeals after the deadline.

NAME AND PREFFERED PRONOUN: People Protesting in Chile (They, them, theirs)

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WRITE AN APPEAL IN YOUR OWN WORDS OR USE THIS MODEL LETTER

Sebastián Piñera
Presidente de la República de Chile

Palacio de la Moneda, Calle Moneda s/n
Santiago, Región Metropolitana,
Chile.
Twitter: @SebastianPinera

Dear Mr. President,

I am appalled by the reports of military presence on the streets to police massive demonstrations in Chile, which began after an increase in public transportation fees, but that underline other structural factors of inequality that are causing major social discontent and unrest. Since the establishment of the state of emergency on 18 October, there are reports of at least 15 deaths, more than 1,400 people arrested, including minors, ill-treatment and other actions that could constitute torture against detainees, and violent repression against those who are peacefully demonstrating.

Mr. president, I strongly urge you to implement measures to address the legitimate demands of those currently exercising their rights of peaceful assembly and freedom of expression. I also call on you to end the deployment of the army to police the demonstrations, and to guarantee that the police strictly comply with the international standards on the use of force.

Yours sincerely,