Hunger strike of Mapuche political prisoners in Chile

miércoles, 28 de julio de 2010

Given the sustained repression of the Chilean State and the complicity of their governments, including the current one of President Sebastián Piñera, we call on the authorities to immediately take an attitude of respect for fundamental human rights of the Mapuche people. They have made their social demands as it pertains to the recovery of their ancestral lands, support for their culture and historical rights. The political persecution of the Mapuche people, the use of militarized violence against communities, youth, elderly and children must stop. The Chilean State must respect the international conventions and human rights treaties it has signed. Failure to do so is a serious violation of the United Nations’ democratic principles.

The hunger strike began on July 12, 2010 in the prisons of Concepcion and Temuco, and

A prisoner from the
Theirs is a call for justice and basic respect that must be implemented now by the government and state. The prisoners' rights have been violated without any regard for the principles of Justice. We demand an end to repression. If the government responds democratically it must accept their demands. These are:

1. The right to a due process or fair trial without the current legal and political mockeries where the use of institutionalized violence including torture persist.
2. An end of anti-terrorist act, made during the dictatorship, and whose racist application against the Mapuche and other illegitimate actions have been condemned by the UN. Its use is facilitated by the criminalization of the Mapuche people legitimate struggles.
3.An end of Military Justice, which promotes impunity for state crimes during the dictatorship and now, in its war against the Mapuche people permits new crimes to go without justice. The use of civil and military trials to a same prisoner must end.
4. Release of all Mapuche political prisoners imprisoned in different jails of the Chilean State.
5. Demilitarization of the Mapuche areas where communities demand recognition of their ancestral lands and political claim rights. The militarized police take communities by assault, abuse children, old people and just anyone that may be even asleep, at night.

The hunger strike of these Mapuche prisoners is their last opportunity to recover their dignity, constantly violated by the Chilean State. Social and ethical principles established internationally condemn the attitude of the Chilean State and its low-intensity war aimed at keeping financial benefits for the few while destroying the country's resources and environment. Poverty in Chile gets worse for the majority.

We disclose the truth of the wrongly called “Mapuche Conflict” as it is the other way around: the Chilean state has not respected their rights. Government, Parliament and civil society must ensure the settlement of these demands that have led to the hunger strike. Thus, we can avoid the aggravation of the strikers that could well lead to additional suffering and death of innocent people. In the past, the State’s attitude has been of further repression and avoiding solving the problems created by the few that control and believe to own the country. The discredit of Chile in front of the international public opinion is the product of the governments. Hunger strikes result from the State’s abusive behaviour on innocent people who only want respect for their people.