Chile: Christian churches set ablaze

Monday, April 11, 2016

By Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) - Last month two churches in Chile were set ablaze by supporters of the Mapuche -- a Chilean movement that seeks to rid the region of religions contrary to their own indigenous beliefs.

According to International Christian Concern, the church attacks were two of five other arsons that occurred within 24 hours.

In the first attack, the Catholic Church of Santa Joaquina in the commune of Padre Las Casas was torched. Hours later an evangelical church -- the Christian Union in Antinao -- was also set afire. A pamphlet found at the site read: "We are going to burn all churches" and demanded that all Mapuche political prisoners be released.

The damage to the churches are estimated at about $10 million.

The morning after the arsons, Chile's Public Ministry named a special prosecutor; at press time, eleven individuals had been arrested and charged.