Blog Archives

Chile: Lies, dam lies and a Mapuche activist murdered

It has taken nearly a year-and-a-half of fighting the authorities, and a second autopsy, to confirm what the family of Macarena Valdés Muñoz already knew – she was hanged after her death. There was no suicide. 

On the afternoon of Monday August 22nd, 2016 Macarena, a Mapuche environmental activist fighting against the construction of a mini-hydroelectric dam near and over her property in Newen-Tranguil, near Liquine, Los Rios, was found hanged in her home aged 32. A noose was round her neck and for the coroner the situation was obvious: “Death by suffocation and hanging” – a suicide with a technical explanation that baffled her family. Read the rest of this entry

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3 of 4 Mapuche Political Prisoners End 116 Day Hunger Strike

Mapuche hungerstrikers courtARIEL TRAGOL continues fast

by Women’s Coordinating Committee for a Free Wallmapu [Toronto], October 2, 2017

On Friday, September 29th, family members of Mapuche Political Prisoners on hunger strike gathered at the Chilean Presidential palace to put forward the demands of their relatives, many of whom were nearing their deathbeds after fasting for 115 days.  The meeting  took place two days after the Chilean College of Doctors, who had been monitoring the health of the hunger strikers, publicly stated all were in serious condition, and that specifically Lonko [Chief] Alfredo Tralcal and Benito Trangol had just 48-hours to live if the fast were to continue. Read the rest of this entry

Eight Mapuche Movement Leaders Arrested in “Operation Hurricane,” amidst Mapuche Hunger Strike

detencionWomen’s Coordinating Committee for a Free Wallmapu, September 23, 2017

Special Police Forces continue brutalization of Mapuche resistance in outrageous criminalizing spectacle during the ongoing Mapuche Hunger Strike.

WALLMAPU This past Saturday, a series of violent raids and arrests against Mapuche movement leaders – dubbed “Operation Hurricane” by Chilean authorities – were carried out by Special Police Forces (PDI) throughout the regions of Bio-Bio, Arauco and Los Rios in southern Chile. Read the rest of this entry

Mapuche fighters destroy two dozen logging trucks in Chile indigenous dispute

Burnt-out trucks are pictured in San Jose de La Mariquina commune, south of SantiagoReuters, August 28, 2017

SANTIAGO (Reuters) – A group of armed men claiming to represent the nation’s indigenous Mapuche people hijacked and burned 29 logging trucks in southern Chile on Monday morning as a years-long conflict with forestry companies heated up.

The government convened an emergency meeting less than two weeks after a similar hijacking in which 18 trucks were burned, and several high-ranking officials denounced the attack later in the day. Read the rest of this entry

Mapuche Political Prisoners on Indefinite Hunger Strike: “We risk our lives to guarantee our freedom.”

Mapuche flag woman childWomen’s Coordinating Committee for a Free Wallampu, June 7, 2017

Mapuche Political Prisoners, in so-called southern Chile, prosecuted in relation to Luchsinger Mackay case in the prison of Temuco communicate the following:

On Monday, May 29th, 2017, we have begun a hunger strike as a last recourse of resistance within political prison to demand and pressure authorities for due process in our cases. Read the rest of this entry

Toxic ‘red tide’ in Chile prompts investigation of salmon farms

Chile red tide sardines

Dead sardines washed up on a beach in Chile, May 2016.

Algal bloom ‘of biblical proportions’ has led to protests and health emergency as concerns raised over dumping of rotting salmon in ocean

by Jonathan Franklin, The Guardian, May 17, 2016

Chilean authorities are investigating the country’s salmon-farming industry after an algal bloom carrying a virulent neurotoxin spread for hundreds of miles along the rugged coastline of Patagonia, triggering a health emergency and angry protests by fishermen.

The huge “red tide” has grown rapidly over recent weeks, in what has been described as the country’s worst environmental crisis in recent years: dozens of people have been poisoned by the algal bloom which makes seafood toxic and has deprived thousands of fishermen of a living.

Read the rest of this entry

Chile: Arson at Hydroelectric Dam’s Office in Pehuenche Territory

Mapuche hydro arson 2from Resume Chile, translated by Earth First! Journal Newswire, Nov 23, 2015

Incendiary devices were used against the installations of the Hydroelectric Center of Angostura de Colbún [Sunday Nov. 15, 2015] during the night. Unidentified people burned the office and three corporate vehicles belonging to Matte, which has installed itself within Pehuenche Territory. Read the rest of this entry

Mapuche Territorial Resistance Group of the CAM claim responsibility for Sabotage

Chile: Two Arson Attacks on Logging Trucks in the Province of Arauco, Wallmapu

Chile Mapuche arson May 2015 1by The Women’s Coordinating Committee for a Free Wallmapu [Toronto], May 15, 2015

Two arson attacks were carried out early Thursday morning at various points in the Araucania Region.

The first took place in at the Mariposas Estate, located on Highway CH181that connects the townships of Curacautín with Victoria, in the Province of Malleco.

According to police reports, the unknown suspects entered the area and lit fire to a shed that contained logging equipment.

Guards confronted the suspects, which gave way to shots being fired, although police assert there were no injuries reported. Read the rest of this entry

Chile: Mapuche anti-Columbus march ends in clashes with police

Mapuches march in Santiago, Chile, against Columbus Day celebrations.

Mapuches march in Santiago, Chile, against Columbus Day celebrations.

Merco Press, October 14th 2014

Chilean police fired tear gas and water cannon on Sunday to break up thousands of indigenous protesters demanding land rights and condemning Columbus Day, after masked demonstrators began throwing stones.

The march in Santiago began festively, with demonstrators decked out in colourful clothing and playing traditional indigenous music from around the country. But some protesters turned violent, throwing stones at police, who responded by firing water cannon and tear gas.

Read the rest of this entry