- Title: 'We are at war' - Chile's Pinera says as protests grow more violent
- Date: 21st October 2019
- Summary: SANTIAGO, CHILE (OCTOBER 21, 2019) (REUTERS) GENERAL VIEW OF STREET SCENE, CARS DRIVING ALONG MAIN AVENUE BURNED VEHICLE, BUS DRIVING BY IN THE BACKGROUND TRAVELLING SHOT OF PILE OF BURNT DEBRIS, REGULAR MORNING TRAFFIC DRIVING ALONG AVENUE, DESTROYED BUSES IN THE BACKGROUND GENERAL VIEW OF PEOPLE WALKING OUTSIDE OF METRO STATION, SOLDIERS CAN BE SEEN IN THE BACKGROUND SOLDIERS AT ENTRANCE OF METRO STATION THAT IS CLOSED METRO STATION SIGN WITH THE WORD "CLOSED" (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) UNIDENTIFIED COMMUTER SAYING: "It's good that it is working (referring to the metro) because otherwise, we wouldn't have another way to get to work. This is very good because there are very little buses and it takes a lot use them." PEOPLE DESCENDING STAIRS INTO METRO STATION THAT IS OPENED SOLDIERS WATCHING ON INTERIOR OF OPENED METRO STATION, FLOOR OF STATION VANDALIZED VARIOUS OF PEOPLE INSIDE METRO STATION THAT IS OPENED TOP VIEW OF TRAINS OPERATING (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) COMMUTER SONIA GAJARDO SAYING: "I think it is good because it helps us all get to work. The metro is very important." TRAIN DEPARTING STATION (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) COMMUTER YERKO HENRIQUEZ SAYING: "It was working well, there were very little people and some of the stops were working. There are very few turnstiles but at least the metro is working."
- Embargoed: 4th November 2019 14:17
- Keywords: Chile protests crisis transportation economy looting aftermath
- Location: SANTIAGO AND PUNTA ARENAS, CHILE
- City: SANTIAGO AND PUNTA ARENAS, CHILE
- Country: Chile
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Civil Unrest,Editors' Choice
- Reuters ID: LVA002B21K3LZ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Chilean authorities scrambled on Monday (October 21) to clear wreckage and re-open public transportation in the capital Santiago after a weekend of chaos in which at least seven people were killed amid violent clashes, arson attacks and looting in cities throughout Chile.
Several Chilean cities were engulfed by days of riots, along with peaceful protests, after a hike in public transport costs. The violence prompted President Sebastian Pinera to declare a state of emergency, placing the military in charge of security in the city of six million.
Transportation officials in Santiago brought in more than 400 buses to reinforce the city's fleet Monday morning, and re-opened the downtown line of the metro providing east-west transportation across the city.
Most schools in the city closed, citing concerns of the safety of their workers and students.
Pinera extended the state of emergency late on Sunday night, saying "we are at war," against vandals who had turned out in droves throughout the capital over the weekend.
Javier Iturriaga, the general in charge of Santiago's security, said in a televised broadcast early Monday he had conducted an overflight of Santiago and was "very satisfied" with the situation. He said the military would nonetheless continue to provide security.
The metro, which suffered multiple arson attacks at stations throughout the city, was operating smoothly during the morning rush, albeit with many fewer people than on a typical Monday morning. Many businesses told their workers to stay home.
In downtown Santiago, street sweepers cleaned up broken glass, scrap metal and barricades that accumulated over several nights of protests.
Newly inked graffiti covered the face of nearly every building along many city blocks. Tear gas lingered in the air, forcing pedestrians to walk with faces covered.
Chile's mining minister said on Sunday that the country's mines operated normally through the weekend.
A union of workers at BHP's Escondida copper mine, the world's largest copper mine, told Reuters early on Monday it would walk off the job for at least a shift on Tuesday in a show of support for the demands of protesters.
Chile is the world's top copper producer.
(Production: Jorge Vega)
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