The pilgrimage will be held amidst strong health measures. However, relatives and friends of those arrested, executed, and disappeared will march to demand justice as many of the victim’s whereabouts are still unknown.
President Sebastian Piñera said that his wish was that Chileans would feel united on this date, that it would not be a dividing element and that they would learn from past lessons.
"Each time we have divided, we have only harvested pain and frustration; instead, each time we have united, we have achieved the most beautiful triumphs of our country,” he said.
September 11, a day of heartbreak. Military coup in Chile in 1973. But also a day to recall our vision for a better society. "El pueblo unido jamás será vencido." pic.twitter.com/4h5T1WcyET
The president's statements come in a moment when social unrest against the government is at its highest.
Despite Piñera's call to avoid a twist to the past, several voices have said that the president is using Chile’s law enforcement Carabineros as political police, which is considered by many as a reminiscence of dictatorship times and violates human rights.
Also, Piñera is criticized for having tried to postpone several times the constitutional plebiscite that will take place next October 25. Then, Chileans will be allowed to approve or reject a new constitutional convention.
If the "No" option wins, the current Constitution, imposed during Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship (1973-1990), will continue in force.