Chile police tear gas education protesters
Santiago: Police fired tear gas and water cannons on at least 100,000 demonstrators in the Chilean capital on Thursday, and arrested 13 during the biggest protest in two months demanding educational reforms.
Angry protesters hurtled sticks, rocks and metal objects like pies as police responded from armoured vehicles in the violent culmination of what had been a peaceful, festive and colourful demonstration, the sixth of its kind.
A police officer was hurt and 13 people were arrested. Organisers estimated a crowd of about 200,000 people participated in the demonstration, while local media gave an estimate of 100,000. No official figures were immediately available.
Rioting broke out at the end of a sprawling demonstration on the streets of downtown Santiago, including a huge crowd waving flags and banners outside La Moneda presidential palace.
A cellphone shop was ransacked and protesters attacked police at the Brazilian embassy in Santiago in an attempt to breach the security barriers and occupy the building. The embassy is located just across the Ministry of Education in the centre of the capital.
"This is historic. Since the return of democracy, we haven`t seen anything this big," said Giorgio Jackson, a student leader.
The unrest came two weeks after some 70,000 people took to the streets calling for greater government investment in public education, which now totals 4.4 percent of Chile`s gross domestic product compared with the seven percent of GDP for developed countries recommended by the United Nations.
"The strikes and protests are legitimate, but that`s not how we will improve education. You need work, study, responsibility and engagement for that," said President Sebastian Pinera, a conservative multimillionaire businessman.
Students and professors want the Chilean government to retake control over the Chilean public schools that educate 90 percent of the country`s 3.5 million students.
Control of the public school system was ceded to local municipalities during the 1973-1990 military dictatorship of General Augusto Pinochet.
Download the all new Zee News app for Android and iOS to stay up to date with latest headlines and news stories in Politics, Entertainment, Sports, Technology, Business and much more from India and around the world.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- I am surviving only on 25% of my liver today, says Big B
- Aamir Khan's 'intolerance' comment kicks up row
- Panel discussion on Aamir Khan's remark on 'intolerance'
- Exclusive: Sudhir Chaudhary in conversation with Aamir Khan on intolerance in India!
- Rahul Gandhi spotted with hate speech convict Imran Masood in Saharanpur
- Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh bypoll results: As it happened on November 24
- Intolerance issue: When did ‘Incredible India’ become ‘Intolerant India’, Anupam Kher asks Aamir Khan
- Tirupati, Tirumala rains update: Temple remains open; pilgrims continue to pour in for darshan
- BJP's big poser to Aamir Khan: Is there any better neighbour for Muslims than a Hindu?
- Muslim leader Asaduddin Owaisi says Aamir Khan wrong in wanting to leave India