Santiago ( Associated Press) — On the eve of a new congressional government request to extend a state of emergency to two other neighboring regions hit by a wave of violence, hooded people on Tuesday killed 19 forest machines in the southern Chilean region of Los Ríos. burnt it.
Police Commander Alejandro Albán Gutierrez reported the incident, although without mentioning possible perpetrators.
The attack comes at a time when a constitutional state of emergency has been in place since May 16 across the La Araucanía region and in the two provinces of Biobio, 600 kilometers south of the Chilean capital, and will see a sixth extension for 15 days on Wednesday. President Gabriel Boric will make the request.
So far, the government has refused to extend a state of emergency to the area near Los Rios, where attacks have been increasing in recent weeks. The 19 machines that set fire to this day have been linked to Monday’s attack in La Araucania, where ten vehicles were torched inside a site where a wind farm was being built.
Ruling Socialist Party chair Paulina Vodanovi expressed the community’s concern on Tuesday because a state of emergency has not been decided in Los Ríos, and called on the government to adopt such measures in the region as soon as possible.
The regions of La Araucanía, Biobio and Los Ríos are home to hundreds of thousands of indigenous Mapuche people who peacefully demand the return of the lands that their ancestors had evinced in the 19th century. However, there are smaller indigenous groups who take violent actions with their demands, particularly with arson attacks on machinery and other properties of forestry companies in the area, which are also the object of million-dollar theft of timber.