MAPUCHE INTERNATIONAL LINK
Mapuche Kingdom Mourns Death of Sovereign After 60 Year Reign
Press Release – January 8th 2014.
Prince Philippe 1st of Araucania and Patagonia 19/2/1927 – 5/1/2014
The monarch in exile died peacefully in his sleep at 9am at his home, La Cheze, Chourgnac d’Ans, France, aged 86. During his reign of over sixty years the former head of the Parisian resistance worked hard to promote the autonomy of the Mapuche people of Araucania and Patagonia, regions now occupied by the states of Chile and Argentina.
His Royal Highness Prince Philippe I,
The Prince helped to facilitate the indigenous nation’s representation at various UN bodies as well as UNPO, the Unrepresented Nations and People’s Organisation, and gave countless interviews to the media raising awareness of their cause.
Prince Philippe’s devotion to the Mapuche was tangible whenever he spoke about them. He was a tireless advocate of their struggle for self-determination and actively sought to foster good relations between the Mapuche and the Kingdom, inviting all members of the community to attend King’s Counsel meetings and encouraging their involvement in the general affairs of the institution. His death will be lamented by many at a time when the indigenous people of southern Chile and Argentina face widespread police brutality and major environmental degradation – much of their homeland is controlled by powerful logging companies.
The Prince’s funeral will take place tomorrow at Tourtoirac Abbey, Tourtoirac, France, at 2:30pm. The official Chaplain of the Kingdom of Araucania and Patagonia will preside over the ceremony, and the late Prince Philippe will be laid to rest in the chapel at the grounds of his home.
A meeting of the Kingdom’s Regency Council will be convened immediately following the internment of His Royal Highness, which will either confirm the appointment of Prince Regent Philippe de Lavalette as King, or to appoint another successor.
The Kingdom of Araucania and Patagonia
The Kingdom is a constitutional monarchy that was formerly set up with the help of French lawyer Orelie Antoine de Tounens in 1860, during which year he was elected King by a grand assembly of over three thousand Mapuche representatives from all four jurisdictions of the Mapuche territory. The Mapuche authorities realised that invasion by Chile and Argentina was imminent and sought to establish a stronger international legal basis for preserving their independence than the ancient tribal system that had stood in place thus far. The invasion went ahead anyway but the legality of the Kingdom remains undisputed by legal experts and continues to function in exile.