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Weekly Report - 6 February 2020 (WR-20-05)

CHILE: Call for end of violence falls on deaf ears

“This violence cannot continue; this violence must end,” Chile’s interior minister Gonzalo Blumel said on 30 January. “These are irrational incidents that are causing serious harm to the country,” he added. Blumel was responding to the most violent day of 2020, during which there were 17 separate incidents in Santiago, including looting, attacks on police stations, and the hijacking of a bus, which led to a fatality. The latest violent protests were only tangentially linked to the social unrest of recent months as they came in response to the death of a football fan killed by a police van, but Blumel’s reaction underscored the government’s concern about a general breakdown of law and order.

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