Protests against the cost of living have now taken 11 people’s lives in Chile after a weekend of on-going demonstrations. The vandalism and violence were originally prompted by the rise of transit fares announced two weeks ago, which has since been suspended by President Sebastián Piñera. Yet, the initial reason was only a reflection of a deeper national frustration against growing economic inequalities. As reported by The Guardian, the state of emergency declared on Oct. 19 led to more than 10,000 military troops taking over the streets of Santiago, imposed curfew in major cities and the interruption of subway services. Such interventions haven’t been seen since the end of Pinochet dictatorship back in 1990.
Tensions in Spain have been rising as the Supreme Court sentenced nine pro-independence activists up to 13 years in jail. The sentenced leaders were judged on their role in the 2017 Catalan referendum which was backed up by more than half of the 5.5 million voters but deemed illegal by Spanish courts, reported Global News. The decision, which came on Oct. 14, led to an entire week of extreme protests by separatists. As more than 300 people have since been detained by the police, Catalan President Quim Torra, who initially called for civil disobedience, is now open for talks with the Spanish Government.
The White House finally backtracked and dropped plan after announcing that the next G7 would be held at Trump’s golf resort in Miami. The initial move was considered by many to be further evidence of the President using his office for personal gain. CBC highlighted that Trump was the first administration official to praise one of his properties for hosting the international summit. While it comes as one of Trump’s rare reverse decisions, his acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said that he knows people think it looks lousy.
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