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Chile: Human Rights

Volume 463: debated on Monday 23 July 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent representations he has received on Chile's observance of human rights with regards to the Mapuche population; and if he will make a statement. (150494)

Our embassy in Santiago has not received any recent representations on the Mapuche.

However, the Government believe firmly that the individual rights of indigenous people should be recognised and protected. All indigenous people are entitled to full respect of their human rights, both within and without their communities. We continuously monitor all human rights in Chile, as we do in other countries. We also work with other EU members on human rights issues, such as minority rights, and in 2005 we co-drafted a report on the steps Chile had taken to implement the Stavenhagen report recommendations regarding indigenous people.

The Government have funded a number of projects to support and promote the rights of indigenous people. We have financed a Minority Rights Group project to help minority and indigenous groups participate effectively at the UN. We also provide support to the Inter-American Development Bank's Indigenous Strategy and fund programmes in Latin America that target indigenous groups. We will continue to monitor the situation of indigenous people, including the Mapuche, in Chile.