Radicals set evangelical centre on fire in Chile
Hooded attackers forced the people inside the centre to leave the building. Small Mapuche groups have been attacking churches since 2016.
Evangélico Digital · SANTIAGO DE CHILE · 10 JULY 2018 · 11:43 CET
Local media report about a new incendiary attack against properties of an evangelical church in Chile.
It happened in the south of the Arauco province (region of the Biobío river), in the night of Saturday 7 to Sunday 8 July.
The building was a training centre of an evangelical church in the municipality of Tirúa.
According to the information given by Governor María Bélgica Tripailaf, around ten hooded people set the building on fire.
“This is a property of an evangelical church that functions as a reception centre. About ten people forced the people inside the centre to leave the building, using violence in some cases, and then set the building on fire”, the Governor explained.
“The subjects were not carrying guns. Two of the victims have minor wounds”, she added.
The Special Investigation Police Brigade (BIPE) is investigating the attack, and no arrests have been made so far.
In 2016, small Mapuche groups started a campaign of terror to visibilize their demands. Their criminal actions have involved many attacks against Catholic and Evangelical churches.
According to these groups, these violent actions respond to the State confiscation of land in the past years, and the presence of private companies that have bought large extensions of territories rich in prime agricultural raw materials.
Journalist Miriam Alejandra Espinoza further explained the social context of the situation in Chile in this analysis article: “Why are churches burning in Chile?”