World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Chilean troops open fire in Easter Island - Warning Graphic

Chilean troops open fire in Easter Island
WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT!

The Pacific Conference of Churches is concerned about the escalating violence on Easter Island and pleads with the authorities to restrain from using force and arms and urges all parties to seek a peaceful outcome.

This after armed Chilean soldiers opened fire early Friday morning (3 December 2010) on unarmed Rapa Nui civilians using automatic rifles, tear gas and shotguns as the Chilean government moves in to remove the indigenous owners off their land. Among the casualties is the president of the Rapa Nui Parliament, Leviante Araki, who was shot twice and has been airlifted to Santiago, the Chilean capital for medical treatment.

Tension had been escalating for months after the Chilean government refused to hold meaningful discussions on the peaceful reoccupation of land by the Rapa Nui people. Rapa Nui is the Spanish name for Easter Island, a Polynesian island in the southeastern Pacific Ocean.

The island was taken over by Chile in 1888. Under current Chilean law, land could be given back to the indigenous owners through the issuance of titles. The attack began at around 5:45am when Chilean troops began rounding up and beating unarmed civilians.

The civilians defended themselves by throwing rocks back to the soldiers who then opened fire using automatic rifles, shotguns and tear gas. Other injuries reported include Richard Tepano, a young man shot at close range in his right eye; Maori Pakarati, shot above his right eye and arm; Zita Atan who was shot in the head; Pia Vargas shot in her right leg; Honu Tepano shot in the shoulder; Claudio Tuki shot in the forehead; Enrique Tepano shot in the face; Santi Hitorangi shot in his right leg from behind and twice in the back.

On Thursday, the Governor had asked the Rapa Nui people to evacuate their premises, who refused to move. The judge who authorized the order for the soldiers to move in has reportedly disappeared. The Chilean government wants ownership of Easter Island because of the economic gains it would receive from the archaeological treasures on the island.

Easter Island is widely famous for its 887 extant monumental statues, called the Moai, created by the early Rapa Nui people. The statues are a World Heritage Site. The Rapa Nui people comprise 60 percent of a population of around five thousand.

WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT BELOW!

Attached are some pictures of the casualties.



ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

UN: Decades Of Health Gains At Risk In Brazil Due To COVID-19

Although COVID-19 cases are declining in Brazil, the pandemic is putting decades of public health gains there at risk, the head of the World Health Organization ( WHO ) said on Friday. With global attention and support focused this week ... More>>

UN Report: Myanmar Approaching Point Of Economic Collapse

The turmoil following the military coup in Myanmar, coupled with the impact of COVID-19 could result in up to 25 million people – nearly half of the country’s population, living in poverty by early next year, a United Nations report said on Friday. That ... More>>

World Vision: India’s Second Wave Shows The Global Fight Against COVID-19 Is Far From Won

As India’s COVID-19 daily infection rates reach devastating levels, international aid agency World Vision has warned that the world is nowhere near defeating this virus and some nations are yet to face their worst days. Andrew Morley, World Vision ... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs

Study: Cut Methane Emissions To Avert Global Temperature Rise

6 May 2021 Methane emissions caused by human activity can be reduced by up to 45 per cent this decade, thus helping to keep global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius in line with the Paris Agreement on climate change, according to a UN-backed ... More>>

UN: Learning From COVID-19, Forum To Highlight Critical Role Of Science, Technology And Innovation In Global Challenges

New York, 4 May —To build on the bold innovations in science, technology and innovations that produced life-saving solutions during the COVID-19 pandemic, the UN will bring together experts to highlight measures that can broaden the development and deployment ... More>>

What COVID-19 Has Taught Us: “Healthcare Can No Longer Exist Without Technology”

A grandmother in a village in the Gambia should have the same quality of life and access to healthcare they deserve as in New York or London. Photo: InnovaRx Global Health Start-up Works To Bridge Healthcare Gap In The Gambia By: Pavithra Rao As ... More>>