Centro de Documentación Mapuche Documentation Center
Mapuches Question the Free Trade Agreement between the European Union and Chile
3rd September, 2002
To Members of Parliament from the countries of the European Union.
To Members of the European Parliament.

In June 2002, the Government of the Republic of Chile and the European Union signed the 'Free Trade Agreement' in order to establish a bilateral relationship that includes a broad range of matters concerning trade and investment. This agreement will come into effect as soon as it is ratified by the Parliaments of the 15 member countries of the European Union.
In the name of Mapuche people's organisations based in Europe, we are asking the MPs in the countries of the European Union and Members of the European Parliament not to ratify this agreement. We wish to draw attention to the fact that putting this agreement into force will have irreversible effects on the existence and well being of the indigenous people of Chile, in particular the Mapuche people.

A number of leading organisations representing the Mapuche people consider this agreement to be incompatible with the standards and ethical principles declared by the European Union. These basic standards must be adhered to with regard to trade with developing countries. In particular, we are most concerned about the total disregard in this Agreement for human rights, sustainable development, the protection of the environment and the rights of indigenous peoples. This should be seen in the context of norms and agreements established by the European Union, the UN and other international organisations.
We request that the Free Trade Agreement between the EU and Chile is not ratified until a fact finding mission has been sent by the
EU to Chile to investigate the following concerns:

The Free Trade Agreement will encourage the commercial activities of the multinational corporations. This could lead to an immediate increase in the indiscriminate exploitation of natural resources because of the lack of effective legislation in Chile to promote sustainable development and protect the environment.

Chilean export businesses will be free to do as they wish with the natural resources in the ancestral territory of the Mapuche nation, in particular with their forestry resources, marine life and fish stocks. We have already seen irreparable damage being caused to the ecosystem and to biodiversity in this way, and the consequent increasing impoverishment of the indigenous communities. The following examples illustrate this situation:

The following existing resolutions validate our position:

We trust that you will take these points into consideration before consenting to the ratification of the 'Free Trade Agreement between the European Union and Chile'.
Yours faithfully
Jorge Calbucura
Mapuche Documentation Center, Ñuke Mapu 
Department of Sociology 
Uppsala University 
P.O. Box 821 
S-751 08 Uppsala, Sweden 
Tel: +46 (18) 471 15 04 
Fax: +46 (18) 471 11 70 
e-mail: jorge.calbucura@soc.uu.se
Reynaldo Mariqueo
Mapuche International Link 
6 Lodge Street, 
Bristol. BS1 5LR, UK. 
Tel/Fax +44-117-927 9391 
e-mail: mil@mapulink.org 
Ramona Quiroga
Council of Indigenous Peoples (Holland) (IRN)
Faktorij 53 
1825 HB Alkmaar 
Tel/Fax: 31-72-5618496 
E-mail: decennium@dds.nl
Gaston Lion
Committee for Indian of The Armericas (Belgium)
Rue du Fond des Cuves 19, 
B-5190 Jemeppe sur Sambre, 
Tel/Fax: +32-71-785652 
E- mail: gaston.lion@skynet.be

Enclosed please find, for your information, the following documents:

- Proposed resolutions of the EU on the violation of Human Rights of the Mapuche of Chile
- Background information of the Mapuche Nation
- List of Mapuche Political Prisoners

For further information see below:

Mapuche Documentation Center, Ñuke Mapu : http://www.soc.uu.se/mapuche
Mapuche International Link: http://www.mapuche-nation.org