Movilización en Angol en apoyo a los presos políticos Mapuche en huelga de hambre durante julio de 2019. Foto: Julio Parra.
Mapuche political prisoners use their own bodies and resort to a solid and liquid food hunger strike as resistance tools against the Chilean state, police repression and the harassment by landowners and multinational corporations. Treated as “terrorists” and branded as the “internal enemy” by the holders of economic power, the strikers give away their newen (strength) while trying to obtain freedom for their people.
Since the 2017 census,1 and despite constant increases in numbers since the 1990s, the Indigenous population has not shown any great changes. When considering their demographic for public policy and regulatory purposes, they are still given as 12.8% of the total population, or approximately 2,158,792 individuals, with the Mapuche being the most numerous among them (some 1,800,000 people). A clear increase in the urban Indigenous population can be seen at the expense of the rural population, with 87.8% now living in urban areas as opposed to 12.2% in rural.2
The 2012 census estimated Rapa Nui’s (Easter Island) total population at around 5,761 across an area of 163.6 square kilometers. This estimate turned out to be flawed, and as a result has largely been nullified.1 The 2002 census, which estimated the total population at 3,765 people is therefore referenced in most calculations. That census recognized 60% of the population as indigenous Rapa Nui, while 39% were mainland Chileans with mixed decent. Easter Island’s traditional language is Rapa Nui. The 2017 projections from the Chilean Instituto Nacional de Estadisticas (INE), estimated a population of 7,750.