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15 Nov 2019 | 03:03 PM UTC

Chile: Government agrees to referendum on Constitution change November 15 /update 29

Chile News Alert

Legislators sign agreement for peace and new constitution on November 15; protests remain possible

TIMEFRAME expected from 11/12/2019, 12:00 AM until 11/18/2019, 11:59 PM (America/Santiago). COUNTRY/REGION Chile, SAntiago, Valparaíso, Antofagasta

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Lawmakers agreed and signed an "Agreement for Peace and a New Constitution" on Friday, November 15, conceding to a key protest demand. In April 2020, voters will be asked whether they approve the idea of a new constitution and whether current lawmakers should serve on the commission that would redraft the document. A second vote in October 2020 will allow voters to select those who will contribute the changes. It is unclear as to whether the decision will diminish protests.

Protests are expected to continue on Friday, however, in the Santiago metropolitan region, including in Maipú where a protest is scheduled at the Plaza Monumento at 09:00 (local time). Artists in Santiago have called a council in Matucana at 15:00, which may cause disruptions. Strikes in Anofagasta are also going forward.

Transportation disruptions will continue in Santiago, particularly in the metro system and due to congestion. Other protests, including spontaneous ones, are to be expected daily across other urban centers in Chile. A heightened security presence and transportation disruptions are expected at all demonstrations. Clashes cannot be ruled out.


Demonstrations began on October 6 after the Chilean government announced an increase in metro and bus fares. The mass protests escalated in Santiago and other cities over the following days to denounce high costs of living, rising electricity prices, the privatization of water, and other social issues. The Chilean judiciary has informed that a total of 26,126 people have been arrested since the start of the protests on Friday, October 18 until Monday, November 11. The National Institute of Human Rights states that as of November 10, 2009 people are hospitalized and at least 20 people have been killed. Movement participants have called for the creation of a new Constitution through a constituent assembly in order to replace the current charter of rights (magna carta) which dates back to Pinochet's dictatorship.

Police have continued to use water cannons and tear gas, among other methods of crowd control, which international human rights organizations have denounced as violations


Individuals in Chile, particularly in Santiago, are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all protests due to the risk of violence, prepare for disruptions to transportation and business, and adhere to any instructions issued by the local authorities.


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