AMERICA/CHILE - "The situation of indigenous peoples requires the remedy of centuries of marginalization and injustice": Bishops on Mapuche

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Santiago (Agenzia Fides) - The Bishops members of the Standing Committee of the Episcopal Conference of Chile expressed their "deep concern" about the conflict that the village of La Araucanía is experiencing and stressed the importance of taking concrete measures to end the violence "with deep respect for human life and the dignity of persons."
In the statement entitled "Blessed are those who work for peace", sent to Fides Agency, together with the need to recognize the culture of the Mapuche people, the Bishops express their confidence "in the authorities, the representatives of society and the community, so that they channel these desires, welcoming the contribution of all, adopting the best decisions and giving always preference to respect and dialogue as a means of resolution to the conflicts."
The declaration, which affirms the full co-operation to this end, concludes that "this protracted situation of indigenous peoples, requires the remedy of centuries of marginalization and injustice." Just yesterday, Wednesday, January 9, the Bishop of Temuco, His Exc. Mgr. Manuel Camilo Vial, had spoken to the national press to warn them that "at the moment there is extreme violence and fear everywhere. The Mapuche people were treated badly for a long time. I have been in Temuco for 12 years and I have always said that Chile has an open challenge with the Mapuche people, and should be considered in the Constitution. Violent people are not part of the Mapuche." (CE) (Agenzia Fides 10/01/2013)