Chile: 40 years on from Pinochet’s coup, impunity must end

dictator pinochet

Chilean General Augusto Pinochet took power in a coup d’etat in Chile on 11 September 1973.
Source:  Amnesty International

Thousands of torture survivors and relatives of those disappeared during General Augusto Pinochet’s brutal regime are still being denied truth, justice and reparation, Amnesty International said today on the eve of the 40th anniversary of the day he seized power.
In a petition signed by thousands of activists, the organization is calling on the Chilean authorities to put an end to all obstacles protecting the perpetrators of human rights violations in the country.

“It is not acceptable that 40 years after the military coup the search for justice, truth and reparation in Chile continues to be hampered. An amnesty law continues to shield human rights violators from prosecution, there are still long delays in judicial proceedings and sentences fail to reflect the severity of the crimes committed,” said Guadalupe Marengo, Deputy Director at the Americas Programme, Amnesty International.

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The Original 9/11: The Violent Overthrow and Death of Democratically Elected Salvador Allende

September 11, 2013 marks the 40th anniversary of the violent overthrow and death of the democratically elected president of Chile, Dr. Salvador Allende.

salvador allende 3Each year in Chile, the people take to the streets to pay tribute to  Allende who dared to try to lead his country on a path that was in the interest of the poor and not the multinational corporations.  The people also pay tribute to the thousands who were ‘disappeared’ by the brutal dictator Pinochet in the formative years of what award-winning author Naomi Klein has called ‘disaster capitalism’.

allende and those disappeared still remembered in Chile

Yesterday, thousands of demonstrators participated in a march in Santiago de Chile, Chile, carrying Chilean flags and photographs of those who disappeared under the brutal dictatorship of General Pinochet. The march was held to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the military coup against the government of Salvador Allende and Allende’s death on September 11, 1973.

According to Amnesty International,  “tens of thousands of people were detained, tortured, killed or disappeared. The total number of people officially recognized as disappeared in Chile or killed between 1973 and 1990 stands at over 3,000 and survivors of political imprisonment and/or torture at around 40,000”.

Below is Fidel’s Reflection on Salvador Allende, written on June 26, 2008

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