“If Greta Thunberg protests against climate change in Chile, she will suffer precautionary checkpoint and inspection of her backpack”

Chilean Senator Alejandro Navarro criticized the approval, in the Security Commission of the Chamber of Deputies, of an indication that establishes the application of preventive identity control from the age of 16, in the context of the discussion of this bill.

“The approved measure constitutes a setback in children’s rights that is not consistent with the progress made by the country in this area,” UNICEF responded, as the developed world established decades ago that children and young people must exercise their rights according to their development; but our government seems to have gone back to medieval times”, Navarro said.

The progressive senator added that: “we are in the 21st century and while many of us advocate for a law that allows young people to vote at 16 in the presidential and at 14 in the municipal elections, this govern ment seems to refloat ideas from the middle ages and seeks to criminalize them” .

“It was not enough to order the Police to enter with brute force and tear gas trucks into a Mapuche School, or to break hundreds of police officers with violence and aggressions in the National Institute; now the government also wants to preventively control 16-year-olds and even 14-year-olds”, he complained.

According to Navarro, “UNICEF made it very clear that this is a retrograde measure: it does not move towards adopting measures to protect children and adolescents against threats of discrimination (Article 2 of the CRC), and of arbitrary interference and attacks on their honor and reputation (article 16 of the CRC)”.

“Moreover,” he recalled, “three decades ago Chile ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which meant that the country should promote these principles in its legislation and public policies, so this is another example that the government of Sebastián Piñera does not respect international agreements, as it happened with Escazú and the UN Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women”.

The president of the Human Rights Commission of the Senate concluded by stating that, “this measure of the government is retrograde, extemporaneous and out of all international norms. No country in the world has Preventive Control Without Cause, so applying it to children and young people is even worse, it is extreme brutality”.

“And to round if off, when the world´s leader against the climate change, Greta Thumberg, arrives in Chile, if she dares to demonstrate in front of La Moneda presidential palace as she just did in the White House freely, she will be controlled by police and her backpack will be inspected, which will make our country and particularly Sebastián Piñera, the world’s laughing stock. At least he is used to it”, Navarro ended.

Press and Communications Office

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