Mensaje on Chile's Indigenous People

Chile's political dynamics were largely unknown to the American public prior to this week's dramatic rescue of 33 miners. And now we generally only hear about how the episode will affect President Sebasitian Pinera's chances for reelection.

The Jesuit-edited Mensaje magazine is a valuable source of commentary on Chilean politics and now thanks to Mirada Global, select articles are available in English. Here is a look at relations between Chile and its indigienous population, the Mapuche people:

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The difficulties that Chilean society and the state have in accepting the indigenous peoples that inhabit the country and do them justice have been made obvious in this Bicentennial.

As long as the country does not recognize its ethnical and cultural diversity, as have done other countries in the region and the world, while they aren’t treated fairly and respectfully, as they deserve, while their right to participate and to their autonomy are not recognized, as well as the rights they have over their lands and territories, which is today accepted by international and compared law, this open wound which causes the country so much pain, will continue to be there. Let’s hope it isn’t so.

The article is also available in Spanish.

Tim Reidy

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