Police fired tear gas and water cannons in skirmishes with sometimes violent, hooded and masked people. Reuters. “How and why would they return to how life was before? (Marcelo Hernandez / Getty Images) REUTERS/Andres Martinez Casares Chilean people protest against the government of President Sebastián Piñera on December 20, 2019 in Santiago, Chile. It’s a way of letting the anger inside me out,” he said. Chile has been rocked by anti-government protests since 2019, leading to a referendum on October 25 in which citizens overwhelmingly voted for a new constitution. Gajardo and his business partner Cristián Luengo have struggled to reconcile his enthusiasm for the movement with the damage it has inflicted upon their business, forcing them to cut their employees’ hours. Santiago – Chile has been gripped by protests against high living costs and inequality for nearly two weeks. On November 27, protesters will gather at Plaza Dignidad/Plaza Italia as of 17:00 (local time) and march to Palacio de la Moneda. Its free-market model has driven down poverty from 31 percent in 2000 to 6.4 percent in 2017, according to the World Bank, and made the copper-rich Andean nation the highest-ranked countryin Latin America on the United Nations Human Development Index. Left: A member of the security forces clashes with demonstrators during a protest against Chile's government in Santiago, Chile, on December 27, 2019. “When I’m out there I’m part of a family … You know that you are beside someone who is suffering the same inequalities as you.”, Chileans have not been appeased by solutions offered by mainstream politicians; the government’s approval rating has slumped to around 10%. Vast marches have become less frequent, but the undercurrent of rage that drove them has not yet dissipated. December 8, 2019, 5:00 AM ... anti-government protesters fill Plaza Italia in Santiago, Chile. Vandals attacked another Santiago church in the early evening, setting its spire aflame and choking side streets with smoke. Tens of thousands of Chileans gathered in the central square of Santiago to mark the one-year anniversary of mass protests that left over 30 dead and thousands injured, with peaceful rallies on Sunday devolving by nightfall into riots and looting. Later, masked individuals firebombed a police headquarters and church. Interior Minister Victor Perez spoke late in the evening, praising the early, peaceful rallies while blasting the late-night mayhem. María Paz Núñez, 34, lives close to Santiago’s Plaza Italia, a focus of the protests, and has been given a leave of absence in order to deal with depression. “When the teargas comes, people help us, washing out our eyes with bicarbonate of soda to soothe the stinging,” he said. Last year's protests, which began October 18, raged until mid-December as Chileans gathered nationwide to call for reforms to the pension, healthcare and education systems. Chile: was a young woman murdered for photographing anti-government protests? Scratch beneath the surface, however, and y… The protests were triggered by an announcement that public transport fares would rise in the capital, Santiago. lurched from an illusory calm to a fiery outburst of rage, the country will next year hold a referendum on drafting a new constitution, widespread anger still simmers over inequality, social exclusion and the high cost of education and healthcare. ... December 12, 2020, 7:00 AM. Chile to Mark the First Anniversary of its Social Outbreak The people gathered near the University of Chile and the La Moneda Palace with banners and slogans to urge early presidential elections. Photo by Ivan Alvarado/Reuters Demonstrators continue to gather across the country every day, and violence often erupts at nightfall. Fire truck sirens, burning barricades on roadways and fireworks on downtown streets added to a sense of chaos in some neighborhoods. Demonstrators throw stones during a protest against Chile's government in Concepcion, near the country's coast on 7 November. Mentally, it puts us in crisis mode. In downtown Santiago, the breeze still carries a whiff of teargas, and the statue of the 19th-century hero Manuel Baquedano in Plaza Italia remains a focal point for protesters. Chileans are gripped by uncertainty – suspended between hopes of progress, and frustration over an elusive political solution, Last modified on Tue 17 Dec 2019 16.40 GMT. They’re in too deep.”, 'The constitution of the dictatorship has died': Chile agrees deal on reform vote, Chile security forces' crackdown leaves toll of death and broken bodies. Chile has — at least from afar — been heralded as a regional success story for its solid governance and investor-friendly environment. Chile, which is hosting a major U.N. climate conference in December, earned praise from climate activists for recently imposing a carbon dioxide tax on conventional energy sources and […] A woman uses her phone as security forces members look on in Santiago, Chile, on 16 December 2019. Chile's Human Rights Commission (CChDH) filed a complaint against the Military Police (Carabineros) for the illegal use of chemicals to dissuade protests in Santiago between November and December 2020. Chile’s tumultuous protests about social inequality, which started a year ago, have left around 30 dead and led to a referendum set for October 25 to change the dictatorship-era constitution. Several groups have called for protests on Friday, December 6, in Santiago, as part of the ongoing nationwide protest movement demanding improved social conditions. Various trade unions have called for additional nationwide protests everyday in Santiago from Wednesday, November 27, through Sunday, December 1. Most demonstrations have been peaceful, though, with one drawin… But the millions-strong mobilization behind the protests wants to totally undo the country’s neoliberal order. On December 13 the United Nations denounces multiple rights violations by the police. “In some ways, this protest has been a carnival and a liberation – bringing euphoria and an excess of emotions,” said psychoanalyst Constanza Michelson. Arson attacks have gutted historic buildings in cities the length of Chile, and there have been incidents of looting and opportunist crime. But then came a week-long curfew (during which their shop was burgled), an ongoing succession of demonstrations and street battles – and a 19-day wait before their next sale. In the past few days, small-scale demonstrations and isolated incidents of violence have nonetheless resurfaced in Chile, as the capital's 6 million citizens emerge from months of confinement following the Covid-19 pandemic. “Seeing my neighbourhood destroyed and graffitied, not having the metro – it all affects you, whether or not you agree with the demands of the movement as I do. For weeks, protesters have staged demonstrations every Friday, demanding economic reforms and the resignation of President Sebastian Pinera. Police estimated that Sunday's rally in Santiago attracted around 25,000 people by 6 p.m., far smaller than the largest protests of 2019. Pulling a black T-shirt over his face, he sprays slogans on walls, helps build makeshift barricades across roads and attacks buildings and infrastructure. But as the protest movement stutters, those who had pinned their hopes on dramatic change may find that the eventual comedown will be severe, said Michelson. Plaza Italia in Santiago has remained a focal point for demonstrators, such as here on 10 December. On Sunday, 2 million Chileans voted in a non-binding consultation which showed that 91% of respondents were in favour of drawing up a new constitution. The demonstrations, while largely peaceful early on, were marred by increasing incidents of violence, looting of supermarkets and clashes with police across the capital later in the day. Many touted signs and rainbow colored homemade banners calling for a "yes" vote next Sunday in a referendum over whether to scrap the country's dictatorship-era Constitution, a key demand of the 2019 protests. security transportation CHL Event. Riots flare across Chile as anti-government protests … He called on Chileans to settle their differences by voting in the upcoming October 25 constitutional referendum. According to Chile’s health ministry, the number of people given medical leave from work citing mental health concerns increased 22% over the first five weeks of the protests. It soon escalated as rioters burned buses and metro stations, looted businesses, and clashed with security forces. “I know that smashing a bus shelter or traffic light won’t change anything – but it exerts pressure and that makes a difference. After an agreement last month between political parties, the country will next year hold a referendum on drafting a new constitution – one of the protesters’ main demands. Faced with a government that doesn’t listen, we are all left with this infuriating feeling of impotence.”. S chool’s out for summer in Chile. Riots in Chile began on Oct. 18 over a hike in metro fares but quickly spiraled into mass protests, arson and looting that have left 26 dead and upwards of $1.5 billion in losses for businesses. The truth is, Chile is unequal, even though it actually reduced poverty from 1989, the time of the democratic transition, until today, from 40% to 16%. “In the past, people didn’t have a cause to identify with – but they certainly do now,” she said. “I would sit in my office staring at my phone, but it didn’t ring for two weeks,” said Gajardo. Two months after Chile lurched from an illusory calm to a fiery outburst of rage, there is still no sign that life is about to return to normal. One is the most proximate cause, which is the increase in the subway fares, but that really doesn’t explain the underlying tensions. There are a number of reasons for the protests. Protests in Chile began earlier this month over a … Some who joined the demonstrations on 18 October have drifted away from confrontations in the street to resume everyday commitments. Chileans have found themselves in a state of uncertainty – suspended between hopes of progress, and frustration over a political solution which seems beyond reach. Four buses allegedly burned during the anti-government protests the day before could be seen in the streets of Santiago on Friday. It’s the uncertainty that gets you in the end.”. People gathered early in the day in demonstrations downtown and in cities throughout Chile that gained size and fervor through the evening. ‘The rapist is you’: Inside the women-led protest against sexual assault in Chile. Every day Camilo, a 20-year-old student in the sprawling coastal city of Valparaíso trudges down the hill from his parents’ house to join the ranks of the discontented. When a tsunami of unrest spilled into Santiago’s fashionable Bellavista neighbourhood in October, Daniel Gajardo, 33, was torn between sympathy for the protesters and frustration at the harm they were doing his fledgling business. Police used water cannon to disperse protesters in Santiago on Sunday. “There’s a huge deficit in terms of mental healthcare in our country, and making people’s commutes longer and days more stressful is inevitably going to take its toll,” she said. In some parts of the country life has regained a degree of normality, but daily routines are still disrupted by transport stoppages, the near-paralysis of the university system, and pockets of vandalism and violence in parts of cities. For many, the stress of each day is compounded by the financial impact of the protests: according to the government, nearly 15,000 businesses have been affected by the movement, more than half of which have suffered damage to their property. The … People wait at a bus stop during a national strike and general demonstration in Santiago on 12 November. Chile's deadly protests — in pictures Women join forces for peaceful march. Massive protests have continued over economic inequality in Chile this week, defying the president and security forces' efforts to restore calm. – New clashes – After a period of calm punctuated by demonstrations every Friday in Santiago, new clashes in late January turn deadly, with four people killed. Officer detained for allegedly throwing boy off bridge at a protest in Chile. The turmoil began on October 18 with student-led protests over a metro fare increase. “It’s been like starting from scratch because we have debts to pay without any income. Climate activists and the United Nations are suffering a major black eye this week as protests and riots resulting from high energy prices have erupted in Santiago, Chile. Chile has seen several weeks of unrest, including street protests, riots, and vandalism, that has so far killed twenty people and injured more than one thousand others. A protest in Santiago, Chile, on Monday after a weekend of riots and clashes with soldiers and police that left 11 dead. “But for many people there is also creeping anxiety: human beings are not built to withstand such uncertainty. Early in the day, an angry mob jeered and threatened a Communist Party mayor. If your travel plans to Chile during December, January or February 2020 are for pleasure, I would move away from the central area and avoid spending time in Santiago and Valparaíso where are the majority of protests daily with the inconvenience of being immersed in tear gas or water thrown by the police to solve the manifestations. Chile: Additional protests planned in Santiago December 6, 8 /update 40 More protests scheduled in Santiago on December 6, 8; avoid all protests. RELATED: Chile Marks Social Outbreak's Anniversary Amid Police Repression Chile Cancels APEC Trade Forum And U.N. On Thursday, police used water cannons and tear gas to disperse protesters, who marched through the city blocking the traffic. According to Chile’s health ministry, the number of people given medical leave from work citing mental health concerns increased 22% over the first five weeks of the protests. Last year's protests, which began October 18, raged until mid-December as Chileans gathered nationwide to call for reforms to the pension, healthcare and education systems. Chile: Fresh protests scheduled in Santiago December 4, 6 /update 39 More protests scheduled in Santiago on December 4, 6; avoid all protests TIMEFRAME expected from 12/4/2019, 12:00 AM until 12/8/2019, 11:59 PM (America/Santiago). Last year’s protests, which began Oct. 18, raged until mid-December as Chileans gathered nationwide to call for reforms to the pension, healthcare and education systems. But widespread anger still simmers over inequality, social exclusion and the high cost of education and healthcare. A demonstrator is detained by security forces during a protest against Chile's government in Santiago, Chile, December 16, 2019. Rioting and looting resulted in billions of dollars in damage and losses to the country's businesses and infrastructure. The harsh austerity measures often involved in their plans have been, as in today’s Chile, the object of fierce street protests in many countries. More than 15 metro stations were temporarily closed amid the unrest. ... Tue 31 Dec 2019 05.00 EST Last modified on Tue 31 Dec 2019 … Students demonstrate at Los Heroes metro station during a mass fare-dodging protest in Santiago, Chile, on December 02, 2019. “The emotions are mixed,” said Luengo, “I was paranoid. This has hit us incredibly hard,” he said. Chile's President Sebastián Piñera has acknowledged that the police committed "abuses" when dealing with protests which have been rocking the country for the past month. The unrest saw the military take to the streets for the first time since the rule of dictator Augusto Pinochet. Published . Every night I sleep badly, worried that the phone will ring to say that our place has been looted. "Those who carry out these acts of violence do not want Chileans to solve our problems through democratic means," Perez told reporters, vowing to punish those who crossed the line Sunday. Riot police officers clash with demonstrators during protests against Chile's government in Santiago, Chile, on Dec. 14, 2019. Most demonstrators on Sunday wore masks, but many could be seen in tight groups, raising concerns about a potential health risk. The recording studio and music shop he co-owns had been thriving, and moved to new premises just a day before the first major demonstration. , hooded and masked people here on 10 December than 15 metro stations, businesses. 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