‘He Wanted to defend Wallmapu’ An Interview with Miriam Gutierrez, Mother of Weychafe Pablo Marchant

On July 9, a 24-year-old man was killed by security on the premises of forestry company Forestal Mininco in what the Chilean media described then as an “armed confrontation.”

Not satisfied with the official accounts of events, Marchant’s family requested forensic

investigations, from which a sinister picture emerged of what had happened on Mininco’s premises.

The report found Marchant was shot in the back, contradicting the police’s account that Marchant had threatened officers with a M16 assault rifle. Furthermore, the report commissioned by Myriam Gutierrez, Marchant’s mother, found Pablo was killed “on his knees” with his head inclined towards the floor, and that his injuries were consistent with that of an execution.

“Neither the police nor prosecution services informed me of his death,” Gutierrez told the Chilean press. “It was the Mapuche community who informed me. Then I got a call from the Legal Services of Temuco telling me that I needed to be present at the autopsy, but when I got there, they wouldn’t let me in…”

Family photo courtesy of Miriam

CC: Tell us a little about Pablo, what motivated him to join the Mapuche struggle?

Pablo from a young age, was always interested in helping those more vulnerable. In his adolescence he began looking for ways to live in a more dignified way, he didn’t believe in institutions that those in power manage, and exercise violence and repression against the people, He didn’t place importance on university titles- Pablo was intelligent and knew there was more to life than that. He understood that the system was wrong and exploits the many for the benefit of the few. he did not want to submit himself and was brave to dare to live in a different more dignified way and at the same time joining a collaborative struggle so that others could do the same. He found this in the Mapuche Nation- a path to a dignified struggle. he left his anthropology degree with the conviction to join the struggle and involve himself in the reconstruction of the Mapuche nation. he knew and understood that the people were being repressed and that they had been banished from their land in a brutal and repressive manner. He wanted to defend Wallmapu, the earth from extractivism that the forestry companies are carrying out, and wanted to be among, collaborate and live like a Mapuche.

CC: What happened on that night?

That night, he with other Weychafe were headed towards a sabotage action on land usurped by Forestal Mininco. Sabotage actions involve expulsing the forestry’s by sabotaging their machinery. At 17:30 he was shot in the shoulder by policeman Hugo Huenchuvil. Once Pablo was on his knees, he was shot in the head. The Chilean authorities did not contact me at any point about what had happened to him. It was not until 2am the following morning that I found out it was not Ernesto Llaitul that had been killed, it was my son. The media had been reporting that there had been a confrontation involving Ernesto. It was the Mapuche community where Pablo lived that broke the news to me. I have not had a single call from any authorities. Not the police, nor investigations or the prosecution services. We still don’t know if there will be any formal investigation into what happened. The policeman involved has not been sanctioned and continues to be in active service.

CC: Do you think you will get justice for Pablo?

With this genocidal state that we have and a justice system that leaves one wanting, we really don’t know. I will fight till the end and do whatever is necessary to find justice for my son.

CC: What can the international community do to support your cause?

Support and spread the word about my son’s case. To this day, 5 months on there has been no form of justice against those who have protected my son’s murderers. Help us call out the state that is protecting and covering-up the actions of the forestry industry in Chile.

I must also point out that these cases are never resolved because the state does not recognise these (sabotage/recuperation) acts as legitimate, instead they qualify them as ‘terrorist actions.’ What the state is doing is colonial domination against the Mapuche people via a repressive genocidal political agenda, in turn denying their right to exist as an autonomous Mapuche nation.”

 Version Espanol

CC: Cuentanos un poco sobre Pablo, Que lo motive a unirse a la lucha Mapuche?

“Pablo desde niño siempre estaba interesado en ayudar a la personas más vulnerables y después ya adolescente se empezó a interesar en buscar formas y vías para vivir más dignamente no creía en la institucionalidad ,que solo manejan los que tienen poder y ejercen violencia y represión contra el pueblo, no le daba importancia a los títulos universitarios el era inteligente y sabía que la vida es mucho más que eso,sabía que el sistema impuesto está mal que explota a las personas en beneficio de unos pocos,por lo que no quiso somertese y fue valiente al atreverse a vivir de manera digna, distinta, y a la vez luchando y a la vez colaborando para que mas personas pudieran hacerlo…el encontró en la nación mapuche una vía de lucha digna y justa y allá salirse de la carrera de antropología lo hace con la convicción de ir a luchar y involucrarse ayudando la la reconstrucción de la nación mapuche…el sabía y entendía que el pueblo era reprimido y había Sido despojado de sus tierras de forma brutal y represiva ,el quería defender al wallmapu a la tierra del extractivismo forestal,queria estar con la personas de las comunidades y colaborar,quería vivir como Mapuche.”

CC: Que Ocurrio aquella noche?

“Esa noche el con más wueychafes se dirigían a un acción de sabotaje en un terreno que estaba usurpado por parte de forestal Mininco ,sabotaje es una acción de expulsar a las forestales del terreno afectandole sus maquinarias ,osea quemándoselas
Alrededor de las 17:30 horas le dispara en el hombro el carabinero Hugo Huenchuvil reduciéndolo para luego ejecutarlo de rodillas disparándole en la cabeza

Las autoridades chilenas no me avisaron en ningún momento de lo que le había pasado Pablo yo supe alrededor de las 2 de la madrugada que el que habían asesinado no era Ernesto llaitul sino que era mi hijo porque de principio dijeron los medios que el había caído en un enfrentamiento era el hijo de Héctor llaitul,y a mi me aviso gente de la comunidad en la que vivía Pablo…nunca tuve un llamado de ninguna autoridad ..ni carabineros ni investigaciones ni fiscalía.”

CC: Crees que vas a consequir justicia para Pablo?
“No sé sabe ni siquiera ha Sido formalizado hasta sigue impune y en servicio activo
Con el estado genocida que tenemos y una justicia que deja mucho que decir nada se sabe mi lucha será hasta el final haré lo que sea necesario para buscar justicia para hijo.”

Como puede aportar la comunidad internacional Frente a esta injusticia?
“Apoyar y difundir el caso de mi hijo Pablo Marchant que hasta ahora ya más de 5 meses aún no hay ningún tipo de justicia hacia los encubridores cómplices y asesinos de mi hijo difundir que el estado encubre y protege de una manera bestial y genocida a las forestales .
También recalcar que en este punto nunca que ha hecho justicia en estos casos porque el estado no reconoce estás acciones legítimas y las califica como acciones terroristas ….lo que el estado hace es una dominación colonial contra el pueblo mapuche ejerciendo una política violenta represiva y genocida y así les niega el reconocimiento y derecho de autonomía como pueblo nación Mapuche.”

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