Chile cancels climate and Apec summits amid unrest

Environment Desk
30 October 2019, Wed
Published: 10:24

Chile cancels climate and Apec summits amid unrest

Chilean President Sebastian Pinera has pulled out of hosting a major united Nations climate change conference as anti-government protests continue.

He said that the decision had "caused him a lot of pain" but that his government needed "to prioritise re-establishing public order".

The conference, known as COP-25, was scheduled for December.

Chile also pulled out of hosting next month's Apec summit, which was expected to draw the US and Chinese presidents.

White House officials said President Trump had been planning to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit scheduled for 15 to 17 November, to discuss a possible trade deal.

At least 20 people have been killed since the mass protests began. While many protests were peaceful there were also deadly incidents of arson and looting, as well as violent clashes between the security forces and protesters.

They have shown little sign of abating despite Mr Piñera announcing measures to ease Chileans' discontent with high levels of inequality and other grievances.

More than 7,000 people have been arrested and the response by Mr Piñera's government to the protests has come under heavy criticism.

He declared a state of emergency in many of Chile's major cities and night-time curfews but the measures only seemed to further incense protesters.

A rally on Saturday is estimated to have drawn more than one million people to the streets of the capital, Santiago, in what organizers said was the largest demonstration since democracy was restored in Chile in 1990. Source: BBC

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