Last Updated: Wednesday, 16 April 2014, 14:04 GMT

2009 Country Reports on Terrorism - Chile

Publisher United States Department of State
Publication Date 5 August 2010
Cite as United States Department of State, 2009 Country Reports on Terrorism - Chile, 5 August 2010, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4c63b64f30.html [accessed 17 April 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Chilean law enforcement agencies investigated a series of small bomb attacks in Santiago. Officials believed that small groups of anarchists were responsible for more than 60 attacks since 2004, which have targeted government buildings, banks, and health clubs. The bombs were small and crudely built. Most of the attacks took place late at night and did not appear to be designed to kill people. On January 17, the government appointed a special prosecutor to investigate the attacks. On November 3, a small bomb exploded outside a Marriott hotel in the Las Condes neighborhood, injuring one person. A group called the Movimiento Dinamitero Efrain Plaza Olmedo claimed responsibility for the bomb, but no arrests were made in this attack.

Chilean law enforcement agencies confronted sporadic low-level violence related to indigenous land disputes in the Araucania region. The Coordinadora Arauco Malleco (CAM), a group seeking recovery of former Mapuche indigenous lands, sometimes through radical means, claimed responsibility for an October 20 attack in which seven trucks were seized and burned. Several members of the CAM subsequently renounced their citizenship and declared war on the Chilean state. Police arrested approximately 30 CAM members during the year and some were charged under Chile's counterterrorism law. Critics challenged the use of the counterterrorism law, which was established by the Pinochet government and restricts the rights of alleged criminals.

Chilean officials continued to monitor the northern part of the country, particularly Iquique, for illicit activities, including terrorist financing and money laundering.

Chile participated in several U.S. training courses related to counterterrorism. Chilean law enforcement officials attended FBI training courses on post-blast investigations and fingerprint collections. Chile's national police, the Carabineros continued to participate in the FBI's South American Fingerprint Exchange initiative, a biometric exchange program wherein foreign governments provided and exchanged biometric information with the United States on violent criminal offenders. Four Chilean officials attended a U.S.-sponsored counterterrorism assistance course in Buenos Aires.

Chile's counterterrorist reaction force is the Grupo de Operaciones Policiales Especiales (GOPE), a 300-person unit of the Carabineros. The GOPE participates annually in Exercise Fuerzas Comando, a U.S. Special Operations Command South-sponsored special operations seminar designed to refine the tactics, techniques, and procedures used by counterterrorism forces. Chile's National Intelligence Agency is a strategic, analytical organization that advises the Government of Chile on a variety of threats, including terrorism.

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