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Speech from Francisco Painevilo, a Mapuche minor of the Rofue community, to the UN Human Rights Council

Human Rights Council
United Nations
18th session
Geneva, 12th – 30th September 2011

Item 3: Promotion and protection of all human, civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development (General Debate).


Madam President,

I present the following statement in relation to the Rights of the Child and the Rights of Indigenous Peoples:

My name is Francisco Painevilo Maldonado, I am a minor of 16 years of age (born on 31st January 1995 in the community of Jose Jineo Ñanco de Rofue, Chile).

On 5th October 2009 I suffered detention, kidnap and torture at the hands of the Chilean police while I was carrying out tasks relating to my cultural role, together with the shaman Fidel Tranamil Nahuel, in communal territorial land. At the same time another group of families from an adjacent Mapuche community were carrying out legitimate social demonstrations to demand the return of their territory.

I was chased by a police helicopter while being shot at with pellets which hit various parts of my body. When the police caught up with me they tied my hands together and I was subjected to humiliation, racist insults, hit and submerged in a canal, only to then be kidnapped in the helicopter and taken to the vicinity of the Santa Lucía farm.

Then the police proceeded to cover my face with a balaclava and equip me with stones and a slingshot to then reveal my face in front of the television cameras and publically accuse me of being one of the community members who took part in the recovery of the Santa Lucía farm. Subsequently I was taken by helicopter to the municipality of Vilcún and during the journey was subjected to torture and threatened with being thrown out of the helicopter if I did not give the names of the occupants of the farm and admit by own part in the demonstrations. In the said municipality, health professionals in the Vilcún hospital checked my injuries, indicating that they were merely light scratches, while I was insulted and rebuked by the medical staff.

Later I was taken to the 3rd Police Station of Padre las Casas, where my father demanded by immediate release, which was granted by the Chilean police on the condition that I first signed a document which accused me of occupying lands.

A criminal lawsuit was presented and the case was transferred to the military justice system; an investigation which to this day has still not delivered concrete results.

With the above evidence, we have demonstrated that there exists no specific policy concerning the treatment of Mapuche minors, victims of physical and psychological torture, which incorporates the Mapuche spiritual and cultural healing model in order to restore the complete health of the victims, the families and the community.

Due to the above, we are demanding the Chilean State to produce a policy of reparation and compensation for the Mapuche minors who have been victims of the infringement of their rights as children and young people, in the context of the legitimate social and political movements of the Mapuche people.

Thank you, Madam President.

Jose Jineo Ñanco Community, Rofue
Makewe Territory


Translated: Sarah Warry
Mapuche International Link



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