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24 Jan 2020 | 05:29 AM UTC

Chile: Protest scheduled in Santiago January 17 /update 46

Cultural organizations to protest police violence in Santiago on January 24; transportation disruption and a heightened security presence likely

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transportation
CHL

Event

Several cultural organizations have scheduled a protest in Santiago on Friday, January 24, to protest police violence amid ongoing nationwide anti-government protests. While the frequency of protests and number of participants have fallen, anti-government groups do get together to continue calling for government reforms. Violence has become synonymous of the protest since the start, raising human rights concerns. Participants are set to gather at Plaza de la Aviacion near the Salvador metro station as of 17:00 (local time). At 18:00, participants will march to Plaza Dignidad.

Related gathering are possible in other urban centers across Chile.

A heightened security presence, as well as transportation and business disruptions are expected near all demonstrations. Clashes between demonstrators and police officers cannot be ruled out.

Context

Demonstrations broke out in October 2019 after the Chilean government announced an increase in metro and bus fares. The mass protests escalated in Santiago and other cities over the following days to denounce high costs of living, rising electricity prices, the privatization of water, and other social issues. President Sebastián Piñera announced on November 17 that the government will allow citizens to vote on a new constitution and that he is willing to consider raising pensions by more than 20 percent. An agreement reached by politicians on November 15 will organize a referendum in April 2020, where Chileans will vote whether to replace the current charter of rights (magna carta) from Pinochet's dictatorship and a new legislative assembly.

Advice

Individuals in Chile, particularly in Santiago, are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all protests due to the risk of violence, prepare for disruptions to transportation and business, and adhere to any instructions issued by the local authorities.