Chile to rewrite Constitution amid mass protests

Photo: Reuters

The announcement from President Sebastian Piñera’s government follows three weeks of protests sparked by a hike in metro fares.

The Chilean government has agreed to write a new constitution to replace one dating back to the General Augusto Pinochet dictatorship, bowing to demands of protesters who have taken to the streets in recent weeks.

Interior Minister Gonzalo Blumel said the president, cabinet members, and political allies had agreed Congress should lead the process of re-writing the constitution. The document would be put to a public referendum.

«Above all, we must focus on the goal of reconfiguring the social contract, which has arisen as a fundamental demand of our citizens,» Blumel said.

Chile’s constitution has been tweaked several times since it was enacted in 1980. But those calling for change say any new text must add further protection of social rights and increase citizen participation in the 30-year old democracy.

Source: Reuters, teleSUR.

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