Chilean President announces reshuffle to "respond" to protesters

Sebastian Pinera spoke Saturday in a message to the nation, the day after a new large demonstration against inequality.

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Chilean President Sebastian Pinera announced on Saturday (October 26th) a major reshuffle of his government, following a historic demonstration in the country against social inequality, which brought together more than a million participants.

"I asked all the ministers to resign so that they could form a new government and be able to respond to these new demands"said the head of state in a message to the nation. Sebastian Pinera also announced a lifting of the state of emergency Sunday if "Circumstances permit" in order to "To contribute to this normalization that so many Chileans want and deserve".

"We are in a new reality. Chile is different from the one we had a week ago "added the head of state. This is the third government reshuffle in little more than a year and a half by the Conservative president, who took office in March 2018.

Article reserved for our subscribers Read also Historic mobilization in Chile against inequalities

A lifting of the state of emergency "if circumstances permit"

Sebastian Pinera also said that the state of emergency could be lifted Sunday, October 27 if "Circumstances permit" in order to "To contribute to this normalization that so many Chileans want and deserve".

The measure, much criticized by the demonstrators, had allowed the deployment since October 18 of thousands of soldiers on the streets of the capital and several regions of the country to ensure public order – a first since the end of the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet (1973-1990).

The curfew in force in the capital Santiago for a week is suspended, besides announced the army in a statement :

"It has been assessed that the current conditions allow us to decide that there will be no curfew in the RM (metropolitan area) from now on. "

This curfew was introduced in the capital on 19 October following violent riots, the starting point of a wave of social protest unprecedented in this Latin American country.

A gradual return to normality was observed in the streets of Santiago. The metro, heavily damaged in the early days of the dispute, was now operating partially on five lines, out of a total of seven. The buses were operating at 98% of their capacity and many businesses have reopened. Locals were busy in various neighborhoods cleaning the streets.


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