July 14, 2020

Human rights violations are serious and repeated

The situations of human rights violations during the protests in Chile are "very serious and repeated" during the three weeks of demonstrations throughout the South American country, according to the director of the National Institute of Human Rights (NHRI), Sergio Micco, on Saturday .

In a joint interview for the Efe Agency and the British agency Reuters, Micco said that from the institution, a state but autonomous and independent entity that monitors the protests from day one, they have verified serious events and filed 262 legal actions in this regard.

"We believe that human rights violations are serious and repeated and there are some types of violations repeated many times," he said.

The director of the NHRI indicated that these events were verified by the 182 members of the agency that work distributed throughout the country as observers during the protests, with those injured in hospitals and those detained in police stations, although he clarified that it is the job of Justice If there were human rights violations.

"We need justice and greater speed in judicial processes so that the sanctions against human rights violators become flesh," he said.


In that sense, Micco said that the NHRI has found in the demonstrations police abuses such as excessive use of force, shot of pellets, rubber pellets or tear gas or illegal detentions against peaceful protesters.

In the case of gunshot wounds, the balance amounts to 1,003 injured out of a total of 1,915, more than half of the total observed, and of these, 579 by pellets.

"The situation that worries us most is the use of pellets. There are 579 people who have been injured by pellets and have produced 182 eye injuries. The Minister of Health (Jaime Máñalich) has just declared that we are facing a violation of human rights, "explained Micco.

These cases, as Efe has been able to verify on the ground, occur daily and the health posts located near the protests perform first aid in each demonstration by police firing.

"According to the protocols, police officers only have the right to use the pellets if they suffer an active aggression that puts physical integrity at risk," Micco said, adding that "many times" they have observed "that pellets are used in situations where the demonstration is peaceful. "


When the work of the NHRI is carried out in the police stations that visit after the demonstrations, the human rights violations found range from cases of torture to sexual abuse.

"Other important cases are complaints of torture with sexual connotations, for example undressing, and the Carabineros protocol itself since March of this year prohibits it, or squats. We had a case of threats of rape and two rapes of men," said Micco .

Since the protests began on October 18, the NHRI records a total of 5,565 people who were arrested.

Among these cases, 201 complaints have been filed for torture and other cruel treatment, 91 for torture with sexual violence and 5 for homicide, among others.

Only in the Metropolitan region, to which Santiago belongs, where there are a greater number of demonstrations, 45 cases of abuse of power against detainees by uniformed officers in police precincts have been recorded.


In three weeks of protests the figures delivered by the Government of Chile account for 20 dead, six of them foreign citizens.

Of the total deaths, five of them allegedly occurred at the hands of State agents, whether police or military, who were in charge of public order during the states of emergency and curfews decreed by President Sebastián Piñera in the first days of protests


From the Executive, situations of abuse and police excesses are confirmed, as Piñera acknowledged in an interview with a local newspaper published this Saturday.

However, with regard to human rights violations, the president preferred to point to "prudence" and leave it in the hands of Justice, referring to the issue regularly in his statements with the phrase "unrestricted respect for rights human "by the Executive.

The protests began on October 18 in response to the rise in the price of subway tickets, but later became a popular clamor against the Government and the country's unequal economic model.

. (tagsToTranslate) Ente (t) Human Rights (t) Chile (t) Violations (t) repeated

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