Chilean miners on strike


Students Take Over, Strike At More Than 180 High Schools Across Chile from Nathan Frandino on Vimeo.

Twenty-four hours after 7,000 contract workers joined the strike at the world’s largest copper mine, trade union leaders warned that employees at Chile‘s state-owned Codelco mining company were consulting today on a proposal to join the picket lines today: here. And here.

Failed Education Reform in Chile Prompts Hunger Strikes, Protests by Thousands of Students: here. And here.

This is a video about a solidarity demonstration in Buenos Aires, Argentina, with Chilean students.

One hundred thousand people took to the streets of Chile on Tuesday to press the government to provide state-funded high-quality education for all: here.

Chile’s Student Rebels: Views From the Trenches. Eloy Fisher, Council on Hemispheric Affairs: “Radio Toma, loosely translated as ‘Occupation Radio,’ broadcasts non-stop information about the protests being staged in front of the University of Chile’s main building – literally a stone’s throw away from the Presidential Palace of La Moneda. Since June 10, students have occupied the beautiful neoclassical 19th Century campus as the protests have continued to intensify around their one demand – to dismantle the market-based approach of the Chilean educational system, something they have scornfully come to label ‘Pinochet’s education'”: here.

USA: A West Virginia miner was fatally electrocuted last week, bringing to 11 the number of coal mining deaths in 2011: here.

6 thoughts on “Chilean miners on strike

  1. 130 detained in Chile student protests

    Posted: 05 August 2011 0317 hrs

    Riot police detain a demonstrator during a student protest in Santiago, Chile.

    SANTIAGO: Police in the Chilean capital Santiago fired water cannons and tear gas on Thursday to disperse hundreds of student protesters calling for education reforms, and detained at least 130 people.

    Security forces moved on students trying to rally on the city’s Plaza Italia, after earlier clashes earlier at spots across the city where students had set up barricades of burning tires, bringing traffic to a standstill.

    At midday, order had been restored and normal road traffic had resumed, with police patrolling on horseback or in vehicles.

    At least 130 people had been detained, according to a midday police toll widely cited by local media including public television TVN. There were no reports of injuries.

    Students in Chile want the national government to take over the public school system, where 90 per cent of the country’s 3.5 million students are educated. The students say the system is underfunded and deeply inequitable.

    Students and professors had announced a national strike and two marches would take place on Thursday, but Interior Minister Rodrigo Hinzpeter said the government had not granted permission for the two demonstrations.

    “There are limits, and we’ve gone past them,” government spokesman Andres Chadwick said on national radio, referring to the multiple protests staged over the past several months.

    “The students do not own the streets.”

    Protests have been mounting since President Sebastian Pinera announced wide-ranging education spending cuts earlier this year despite the country having one of the fastest growing economies in Latin America.

    Chile currently dedicates 4.4 per cent of the country’s gross national product to education, far below the seven per cent recommended by UNESCO.

    Pinera has called on the students to reach a negotiated solution with the government, which this week presented a 21-point proposal for resolving the crisis — the second such offer since the conflict began.

    The proposal would meet one of the students’ key demands by enshrining the right to quality education in the constitution, and it includes an increase in grants and lower interest rates on student loans.

    Students were expected to officially respond on Friday, but the proposal has already been rejected by several powerful student unions.

    Last month, at least 32 police were wounded and 54 demonstrators arrested as police used water cannons and tear gas to disperse tens of thousands of protesters, who fought back with sticks, rocks and plastic bottles of paint.

    -AFP/ac

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