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  • The Mayor of the Santiago Metropolitan Area Felipe Guevara in Santiago, Chile, 2019.

    The Mayor of the Santiago Metropolitan Area Felipe Guevara in Santiago, Chile, 2019. | Photo: Twitter/ @Carlossassarini

Published 2 January 2020

The metropolitan authority is accused of preventing freedom of movement and the right of assembly through repressive tactics deployed at Dignity Square.

Chile’s lawmaker of the Social Convergence party Gabriel Boric Thursday confirmed that a coalition of progressive parties will present a constitutional accusation against the Santiago Metropolitan Mayor Felipe Guevara who is one of the authorities responsible for the brutal repression that the Military Police has been performing against citizens at Dignity Square.

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"Guevara is politically responsible for some of the most extreme cases of police violence at Dignity Square, including the crushing by two police vehicles of young Oscar Perez on Dec. 20, and the death of construction worker Mauricio Fredes on Dec. 27, while he was fleeing repression," local outlet La Izquierda Diario recalled.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

On Wednesday, the Communist Party president Guillermo Teillier confirmed that the accusation against Guevara highlights his "direct responsibility" in the Military Police's abusive acts.

The Party for Democracy bench leader Ricardo Celis explained that the legal accusation also includes the violation of the right to assembly, which the constitution grants to the population.

"The rights to assembly and freedom of expression, which are constitutional, civil and political rights, are not being respected and the order comes clearly from the Santiago's Intendencia," the Communist lawmaker Karol Cariola said.

The meme reads, "End of the year with repression in Chile. The Military Police took armored riot vehicles with water cannons to the street during the celebration. In downtown Santiago, thousands of Chileans received the new year at Italy Square, which is the epicenter of the social unrest that the country has been living for more than two months."

The Santiago Mayor has received five constitutional accusations during the last 2 years of his term. So far, President Sebastian Piñera and Guevara jointly accumulate 11 constitutional accusations, the largest amount of legal actions raised against elected authorities since the return to democracy.​​​​​​​

Dignity Square was packed with tens of thousands of people who gathered to sing, dance, shout and protest against the Chilean Neoliberal State.

Due to the magnitude of the act and the symbolic character of the holiday, the Military Police did not dare to try to enter the square during the night, which allowed the attendees to celebrate the arrival of the new year in a festive atmosphere.

At dawn, however, the Military Police attacked hundreds of people who were still in Dignity Square with armored cars, water, and tear gas.​​​​​​​ Local observers described their action as useless and senseless.

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