First nations – a ‘war between two worlds’

On 1 December 2018 in Brisbane activists, musicians and supporters conducted a solidarity action for first nations people of Chile, West Papua and Australia, protesting the assassination of Camilo Catrillanca by Chilean Jungle Commandoes on 14 November 2018.

Lili gives history of Mapuche struggle. Photo – Lachlan Hurse.

Lili Sanchez introduced the rally and condemned the extrajudicial killings of Mapuche leaders.  For example young Mapuche activist, Camilo Catrillanca, was shot multiple times on 14 November 2018, surrounded by Carabineros de Chile and passed away without medical assistance.

Pablo plays Mapuche horn Photo – Lachlan Hurse.

Pablo (playing the Mapuche horn) and Lili Sanchez welcomed people from different struggles – Mapuche, West Papua, Aboriginal activists and their supporters.

War between two different world views
Lilli gave a brief history of the Mapuche 500 year resistance struggle. Mapuche are indigenous people from Chile on both sides of the Andes. In the 1970s the progressive Allende government set aside land for the Mapuche. The Pinochet dictatorship gave the land to wealthy landholders.

I’m here to offer my heart
Lilli introduces Jumping Fences and Sue Monk describes how important music is in this and other struggles.

Unconquered Mapuche – visit to Mapuche country
Gamillaray woman, Kristy Lee, describes her visit to Mapuche land and the repression of the state that she visited first hand.  Very difficult for Mapuche to sell what they grow. Assassinations in Mapuche autonomous territory are being carried out by the Jungle squad. Mapuche remain unconquered and Kristy Lee proud to stand alongside another first nations people. Kristy Lee attended many Mapuche ceremonies preserving their culture.

Mapuche sell their agriculture in a large city in the south but have to pay higher tax in the market.

Kristy Lee offers solidarity to Mapuche. Photo – Lachlan Hurse.

Touch One, Touch All
At the rally Sam Watson Jnr said that these struggles and those of the Palestinians – wherever there has been colonialism – the struggle is the same. As a socialist he said we must resist. Symbolically Sam Watson Jr and comrades from each struggle combined all the flags (pictured).

People from each struggle agreed to come together and co-operate like this in the future. This event may herald a new era of Latin American and first nations activists in Brisbane. I certainly hope so.

Sam gives solidarity. Photo – Lachlan Hurse.

Support from Catholic Workers for West Papua. Photo – Lachlan Hurse.
Jumping fences sing at Mapuche & West Papuan rally. Photo – Lili Sanchez.

Ian Curr
2 Dec 2018

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