Forty years ago, on September 11, 1973, the military forces commanded by General Augusto Pinochet, overthrew the democratically elected government of Chile led by Salvador Allende. Thousands of people were killed. Many thousands more were imprisoned.
The coup d’etat was swift, brutal and merciless. It was carried out by the Chilean oligarchs with the active assistance of the United States. Overnight, the progressive social and economic measures introduced by the Allende government were overturned and a reign of terror ensued.
Perhaps 500,000 Chileans were forced into exile, relocating to countries around the world. Several hundred found themselves in Winnipeg, where they have made significant and lasting contributions to the life of our city.
In commemoration of the coup, Winnipeg’s Chilean community held numerous educational and cultural events throughout September. On September 28th, the Chilean Human Rights Council of Canada held a conference at the University of Winnipeg entitled “Human Rights – The Chilean Experience.” The conference was organized by Chilean Human Rights Council of Canada and the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. Sponsors included the United Steelworkers, the University of Manitoba, Mauro Centre and the University of Winnipeg, Global College
- Dr. Miguel Sanchez, University of Regina, School of Social Work
- Fr. Eduardo Enrique Soto Parra, SJ, Mauro Centre, University of Manitoba
- Claudia Garcia de la Huerta, Journalist
- Dr. Clint Curle, Canadian Museum for Human Rights (Moderator)
Here is my video report.