Mapuche Family Occupying Ancestral Land Loses in Chilean Supreme Court

On Tuesday, October 2nd, the Chilean Supreme Court released a decision ordering a Mapuche family in Tirúa to vacate the lands they had been occupying in protest or else the police force would be used to remove them. The lands in question were in the zone of Puerto Choque and are owned by a farmer, José Salazar Romero, who brought the lawsuit to stop the occupation on his land. The Chilean Supreme Court unanimously granted Salazar’s request.

Prior to the Supreme Court decision, portions of the lands had been occupied by the Pilquimán Yebilao family — a Mapuche family who claimed the lands are part of their ancestral territory. Their claim was based, in part, on ILO Convention 169 which is part of Chile’s national law and protects indigenous rights. While the Supreme Court acknowledged the state’s obligations under ILO Convention 169, it argued that the law did not apply in this case because the lands in question were privately-owned, and not indigenous in nature.

A copy of the Supreme Court’s decision, as well as the lower court’s decision, can be found here.

See the articles linked in this story and additional Indigenous headlines by clicking here (updated daily).

Posted in: Chile, Mapuche
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