Leaders of Chile’s Mapuche indigenous people announced their support for the massive protests that are sweeping the country, saying they will press their demands for local autonomy in their traditional territories. Aucán Huilcamánn of the Consejo de Todas las Tierras (Council of All Lands) made the declaration in the city of Temuco, Araucanía region, standing beside Marcelo Catrillanca—father of a young Mapuche man killed by the paramilitary Carabineros last year, an outrage that sparked local protests. Camilo Catrillanca was shot in the back last November while working his lands in the community of Temucuicui. He had been driving his tractor away from an outpost of the Carabineros’ Special Police Operations Group (GOPE)—the same elite force that now being unleashed on protesters in Chile’s cities. Four ex-Carabineros have been arrested in the case. (Photo: Soy Chile)
The exiled Royal House of the Kingdom of Araucania and Patagonia elected Prince Frederic Luz as the new monarch—claiming dominion over a large area of Chile in the name of the region's Mapuche indigenous inhabitants. Although now dispersed in Britain and France, the Royal House traces its origin to 1860, when Orélie de Tounens was recognized as king by the Mapuche, on his pledge to help them resist Chilean encroachment on their unceded territory. In the 1870s, the territory was finally taken in a genocidal campaign by the Chilean military. De Tounens returned to Europe and campaigned for international recognition of his exiled government. The Royal House still advocates for the rights and sovereignty of the Mapuche today. (Photo: North American Araucanian Royalist Society via CraigsList Philadelphia)
Tens of thousands of Argentines held protests across the country, demanding answers one month after the disappearance of an indigenous rights activist. Demonstrators held photos of Santiago Maldonado, who was last seen when border police evicted a group of indigenous Mapuche from lands in the southern Patagonia region. In Buenos Aires, protesters converged on the Plaza de Mayo, iconic for its role in the struggle to demand justice for the "disappeared" under the military dictatorship.
Authorities in Argentina's Chubut province accused Mapuche indigenous activists of being "terrorists" after a clash with police at a protest encampment on usurped lands.
Members of Mapuche Ancestral Resistance burned two excavator machines being used to build a hydro-dam in southern Argentina, demanding restoration of traditional lands.
Mapuche indigenous leaders in Chile are expressing outrage over the violent eviction of protesters who were occupying a government office in the southern region of Araucania.
Indigenous Mapuche residents blocked access to oil and gas wells to press demands over territorial rights, nearly shutting down production in Argentina's Neuquén province.
After two decades of struggle Mapuche communities are still trying to regain ancestral land. Meanwhile, forestry companies try to blame major fires on Mapuche activists.
Unknown assailants killed a spokesperson for a Mapuche community that has carried out several land occupations. He was the second activist from his family to die violently.
Argentina's center-left government passed a law to attract foreign investment in oil production, especially for hydrofracking in the Vaca Muerta shale deposits.
Chile's Socialist president Bachelet says she'll "achieve progress" on indigenous issues, but activists can't forget the lack of progress in her previous administration.
Environmentalists accuse a former interior minister of diverting water illegally to his farming operations—so a local court punishes the environmentalists.