Tag Archives: Antiterrorism Law

Inter-American Court of Human Rights Finds in Favor of Mapuche Individuals

The Inter-American Court of Human Rights, the highest judicial body of the Organization of American States (OAS), reached a decision in favor of eight Mapuche individuals who claimed that Chile’s use of the Anti-Terrorism Law against them violated their rights. The decision was written on May 29, 2014 and was later made public during the week of July 28, 2014. The Court found that Chile’s Anti-Terrorism Law denied the eight Mapuche individuals a number of due process rights and ordered Chile to vacate their judgments against the individuals and to compensate them for the violations. The case was a historic victory for the Mapuche and their supporters who have been protesting the use of the Anti-Terrorism law against their people for many years.

For coverage on the case in English, check out the Santiago Time’s article.

The Court’s full decision (in Spanish) can be downloaded here.

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UN Instructs Chile to Return Indigenous Lands, Improve Consultation, and Redefine Anti-Terrorism Law

The United Nation’s Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) completed its 83rd session on August 30th in Geneva. During the session, CERD discussed Chile’s treatment of Indigenous peoples and offered some recommendations for the future. Specifically, CERD asked Chile: to speed up the process of returning lands to Indigenous peoples throughout the country; to improve Indigenous consultation, particularly with respect to natural resource development; and to “precisely define” crimes that fall under the Anti-Terrorism Law while ensuring the law is not used inappropriately against the Mapuche people. Continue reading

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Mapuche Testify Against Chile Before Inter-American Court of Human Rights (OAS)

On Wednesday and Thursday (May 29-30, 2013), the Inter-American Court of Human Rights — a body of the Organization of American States — heard its first case against the Chilean state. The case actually involved three separate, but similar matters involving Mapuche individuals who had been subjected to Chile’s so-called Antiterrorism Law. The Antiterrorism Law has come under much criticism both internationally and from within Chile, and in this instance, the Mapuche individuals were presenting their testimony on how its application violated their human rights and were asking for its repeal. Continue reading

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The Militarisation of Mapuche Regions in Chile (Op-Ed)

Note: Written by Claudio Fuentes. The original Spanish version of this article appeared in Chilean online newspaper El Mostrador. The original English translation of this article first appeared on the Chileno website.

Militarizing Araucanía: A Bad Idea

Is it advisable to militarise Araucanía? Although the Government has not for the moment invoked any state of emergency, it has taken two steps. A decision was made to restrict the freedom of individuals that began with major police roadblocks and involving the armed forces with intelligence work. Indeed, in addition to an increase in the number of police officers, the President announced that police would establish a “special area of control and security in those places that have been most affected by these crimes, so as to establish permanent control daytime and night, both vehicular traffic and the identities of persons travelling in the most affected areas. ” Continue reading

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Mapuche Hunger Strikers Reach Day 40; Attorneys Argue in Front of Supreme Court

On Thursday, October 4th, attorneys for four Mapuche prisoners who were sentenced for a variety of alleged crimes, including attempted murder of police officers, went before the criminal chamber of the Chilean Supreme Court. The attorneys argued for a mistrial and dismissal of the convictions based on a lack of evidence. Additionally, arguments were made to apply the American Convention on Civil Rights and the International Labor Organization Convention 169 on Indigenous Peoples to the prisoners’ prison conditions, which could allow them additional prison privileges. The Supreme Court is expected to announce its decision with respect to these issues on October 24, 2012. Continue reading

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Amnesty International Highlights Indigenous Situation in Argentina, Chile, and Paraguay

On Thursday, May 24th, Amnesty International released its annual report entitled, “The State of the World’s Human Rights.” The document, which is more than 400 pages long, highlights major global human rights issues and then examines the human rights situation country-by-country. Indigenous peoples’ rights are discussed in the context of 14 different country reports, including: Argentina, Chile, and Paraguay. Below is a summary of what Amnesty International had to say about indigenous rights in each of those countries. If you’d like to review the entire document, you can download the entire English version here. Continue reading

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Mapuche Prisoners File Claim Against Chile with the OAS

On Wednesday, November 30th, a complaint was filed against the Chilean government with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights — a structure of the Organization of American States (OAS). The petition was brought by four Mapuche prisoners who have alleged human rights violations in the way they their trial was handled, and seeks to have the international body inform Chile that the country’s Antiterrorism Law needs to be reformed to adhere to human rights law. The Commission is expected to rule on the admissibility of the petition and whether they will take the case sometime this week. Continue reading

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UN High Commissioner Discusses Indigenous Issues in Chile

This week Chile finds itself hosting Kang Kyung-wha, the United Nation’s Deputy High Commission on Human Rights. Kang is largely in the country due to the ongoing protests and movements related to education within Chile, but is also taking some of her time to discuss Indigenous rights. During her time in the country, Kang spoke about Indigenous rights with the President of Chile’s Supreme Court, the Mapuche Federation of Students (FEMAE in Spanish), and the Mapuche Territorial Alliance among others. Continue reading

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Court Acquits Two Mapuche of Charges Under Antiterrorism Law

On Friday, September 30th, a Temuco Court acquit two Mapuche men – Luis Tralcal and Mauricio Huaiquilao — of a number of crimes, including charges made under Chile’s Antiterrorism Law. The case stemmed from a variety of incidents that occurred between 2005 and 2009, and the trial began on September 5th of this year. After 18 days of trial, the case concluded today and the judges gave their verdict. Despite the victory for the Mapuche defendants, there was some talk about the judgement being challenged by the prosecutor. Continue reading

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Human Rights Watch Director Concludes: Strong Evidence of Police Abuse Against Mapuche

On Wednesday, August 24th, the Commission for the Rights of the Mapuche held its second meeting — this time in Concepción. In attendance at this meeting was José Miguel Vivanco, the Director for Human Rights Watch in the Americas. After the meeting, Vivanco gave an interview in which he discussed the relationship between the Chilean government and the Mapuche people. Among other things, he stated: “We have conducted some studies and have concluded that there is, indeed, strong evidence of police abuse, of police brutality during raids, and of excessive and unjustified force, which has resulted in the loss of Mapuche lives during this conflict.” Continue reading

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