In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the Piñera administration keeps around 2,500 political prisoners in jail, detained during the mobilizations that began on 18 October 2019. It aims to physically eliminate some of the best fighters for the revolution through leaving prisons in dire situation, without the possibility of visits, several prisoners tested positive for COVID-19.
The IWL-FI and its national sections have been following the campaign carried out by our comrades from MIT and from numerous political, social and human rights organizations demanding the release of political prisoners and sanitary conditions in all prisons. As a result of this action, several comrades have been released.
In order to spread this campaign, we launched this special section in our Site. We invite you to follow the news on the situation of political prisoners and to join the campaign.
On 18 October 2019, a true revolution began in Chile. The world was witnessing the gigantic protests that challenged the repressive forces’ backlash that tried to silence the people’s demands. The mobilization, initiated against fares increase, turned into an uprising produced by years of injustice, exploitation and repression carried out by the capitalists against the workers and the people. The “Chilean model” presented as the ideal of imperialism and the bourgeois governments of the world, exposed its true face.
The images of thousands of young people on the “front line” facing the brutal repression of the Piñera government grabbed the spotlight of the news. The flag of our Chilean party, MIT, was flying proudly at Plaza de la Dignidad. Despite the policy of the world’s bosses’ media to hide the development of the revolution, it is still undeniable. This was verified on March 8 of this year, when, despite the divisive policy of some feminist organizations, more than a million invaded the streets of Santiago on International Women’s Day.
From the beginning both government and capitalist’s parties resorted to brutal repression, arrests, torture and killing dozens of fighters. The bullets of the carabinieri police force left hundreds of people with irreparable consequences. As singer Mon Laferte denounced at the Grammy Awards, the forces of repression in Chile “torture, rape and kill” as a systematic policy. That is why fighting back repression and the struggle to set political prisoners free are central tasks of the revolution.
The revolution has not yet said its last word
Today the situation of the pandemic has placed a pause in the revolution. Yet the struggle continues, and the protagonists continue to take action. Thus, while Piñera administration, like its partners in other countries, places the defense of capitalists’ profits above all else while the poorest suffer the consequences of abandonment now aggravated by the virus, many of those young people who were at the forefront of the protests are located in the “front line” of confronting the pandemic today, organizing themselves in the Territorial Assemblies and other organizations, many of which emerged during the revolution, to help to organize the most neglected sectors where the bourgeois state is absent. In the fight for healthcare and survival, the same actors once again face each other.
Thus, for example, in the center of Valparaíso, the Plaza el Descanso y la Resistencia Assembly uses its communications and healthcare network created in the midst of the revolutionary process to put them at the service of fighting back the pandemic; The Marimonjas Assembly denounces the abandonment of the State and the precarious health system and creates a Sanitation Brigade; At Puente Alto commune, in Santiago, healthcare workers created a healthcare brigade, etc.
As MIT comrades say “the organized people continue to accumulate experience for the coming struggles, creating organizations and deliberating on the future of society”.
At these times when we suffer the onslaught of capitalist barbarism and when the illegitimate business government of Piñera and the corrupt parliament stumble without knowing what to do, it becomes imperative for us to resolve the most pressing aspects of this crisis through our own self-organization. We call to multiply popular organizations: territorial assemblies, collective pots, purchase groups, factory committees, healthcare and unemployed collectives to bring together our flags in a powerful organization, when the decisive hour strikes. “The Chilean revolution still has much to say”.
Freedom for political prisoners now! Sanitary conditions in all prisons!
The current chapter of the Chilean revolution demands from the fighters and defenders of Human Rights around the world a central task: the defense of the life of the Chilean political prisoners who are being tortured and pushed to death by the murderous Piñera administration.
This task is not only fundamental to save the lives of these heroic fighters, the vast majority of them young from working class and people’s background, but it is also essential for the future of the revolution. We must develop a strong and massive international campaign to prevent the physical liquidation of an important part of the Chilean revolutionary vanguard. That is what is at stake now.
Human rights and political prisoners’ relatives’ organizations, militant collectives and activists must feel the widest possible international support in this situation. At the same time, the Piñera government must feel the entire world rejecting its criminal policy. We must demand that governments that fill their mouths talking about democracy and respect for human rights break relations with the Chilean government if it does not stop this genocide.
Once again, we call everyone to send motions/videos/pictures in solidarity with political prisoners to the authorities and to help to fund the families, human rights defense organizations and lawyers who defend the prisoners which are under attack as María Rivera from the “People’s Defender” organization and MIT member.