Interview Pascual Pichún Paillalao

By Mario Casasus; Mar. 26, 2007



"The Neruda Foundation president used his influence in making and enforcing laws crimes against Mapuche antiterrorist"

Traiguén, Chile. - In the imagery of the Mapuche community, round the presence of Neruda, that poet who fled to the south of the ridge defending their ideas and freedom, after hiding Traiguén Neruda would visit their friends with Aida Figueroa, were different times, Aida was a communist and his brother Juan Agustín Figueroa a mediocre lawyer. I am inspired by the beauty of the South, because of poverty and injustice. Pichún Pascual (1953) survived the last five years persecuted and imprisoned for Figueroa.

Manufacture of crime, law enforcement counterterrorism, 20 raids on the humble family home Pichún, an imprisoned son (Rafael), another refugee in Argentina (Pascual son) is the balance of Figueroa, an attorney who is the judge and jury State terrorism and ideologue of the Mapuche community harassment.

I spent just over 24 hours Traiguén community, seeing how they earn a living, cutting logs, selling flowers at the fair, still looks bartering animals, insist they can not be terrorists, kindness eyes looks over them, lonko grandchildren of Mapuche instruments sing, but sometimes the pain that seeks Figueroa acostúmbralos occurs when children play that the cops take them prisoners (military police). But last night there was a party, was the birthday of Dona Flora's mom Pichún Collonao Pascual and Pascual lonko early days in Liberty.

Juan Pichún took me home to his parents, as he told me of his conversation with Noam Chomsky, the American intellectual Temuco visited to verify the allegations against the Mapuche community by landowners as a state policy, Noam Chomsky lost the sense of wonder Pichún when John told him it was Juan Agustín Figueroa (Neruda Foundation president) who was determined to destroy his family (16 October 2006).

Without further introduction, let the voice to the voiceless:
- When he was released and after how long?

- I left on March 4 serving a sentence of 5 years and one day, by a special law that I applied a few years ago, Mr. Juan Agustín Figueroa used as a strategy to judges, to imprison.

- Are we talking about the influence of Figueroa on the rule of law?

- Yes

-And what is the specific case for which he was charged under the Terrorism Act?

- To me the whole world, especially legal advocates have asked and ask again, how was it possible this sentence? Since there was never evidence that did (the fire in an abandoned house) accused us of what Figueroa.

- Does the concrete fact of a fire in the abandoned house has to do with this accusation Figueroa?

- Yes, because first accused us of having burned a manor house, and then went to the first trial that was never proved anything (were acquitted), then after it was reported that this was not a manor house but tenant, nor knew how burned.

- Do you deny having burned that house? -Pascual is categorical in denying involvement-

-We had no knowledge of how the house was burned, to accuse us, told us that his finger went.

- (I intervene) That has its technical name: Manufacture of crime ...

-Surely, we do not understand, but it happened that way.

- Do you how many times lawyers could appeal the concept of the Patriot Act?


And what were the answers?

-Both times they said they did not accept it in the Supreme Court.

- So were five years in prison? Jail? Common or High Security under the concept of Terrorism Act?

- In ordinary prison, in the community of Traiguén fulfill the 5 years we were not terrorists as never sought locate in a high security prison, by the fact that it was never proven that said Figueroa had done.

- What was the hardest part of this imprisonment of 5 years? 

-Uhhh ... very hard all, especially as lonkos community, we are a people's authority, and we never had a problem, never went to jail to stop, even for "chicha" (drunk) as we say here, because when comes a cured person would also jailed for not having money to pay the fine, prisoners were ever before. It was an unjust imprisonment without adequate knowledge of why we were here. 

- And tried to make a low penalty for not having a history and good behavior? 

-Always did, after all when you saw that we were on the right, we dropped 9 months (3 months per year) with the new law the government of Ricardo Lagos. 

- How was the relationship of the Mapuche communities being residents of this estate of Juan Agustín Figueroa? 

- The relationship, if it employs some few families, as authority I had a good relationship, we come to render service to the Fundo de Figueroa. 

- When is the before and the after? Why Figueroa begins to pursue? 

- For stuffing things because Figueroa wanted to give me the first stab at the fact that we continue to discover roles that his estate was originally 185 hectares and is today almost 3,000 hectares. The question is this: Where did this land which is founded the? We did things (research) without touching it or its properties. In contrast with the Forest Mininco when great struggle with land reclamation that had usurped, then we take to the forest, then Figueroa was reached that tomorrow was going to play and also had no papers who owned its Fundo, I think that's why Figueroa was quick to give us a special law. 

- Identifies Figueroa and persecution comes? 

-We always show when we face injustice with Forest (in Santa Rosa), through media and publications. 

-Last year I interviewed his son who lives in Argentina refugee why does it seem that Figueroa has something against your family? 

-All children had a higher education, young people have the ability to understand everything better, that how to steer this country and what they were doing landowners, foresters, then my children (with others) begin to discover and disseminate to Mapuche territory over, so I think that was the persecution of my family. 

- Now that you are free and able to communicate with your child refugee in Argentina? 

-Yes, we have had phone communication, as he is seeking political asylum because of the persecution they know has and my other son is in jail. 

- Do you know the number of people they are in prison? 

-If I told you I'd be lying exactly between persecuted, prisoners, refugees, 8 to go underground, in total more than 200 Mapuches. 

- Have you shared a cell with the Mapuche who made a hunger strike for over 70 days? 

-I shared with Patricia Troncoso "The Hump" she shared four trials. 

- How are they after the hunger strike? 

Before leaving, went to see, because he had a permit Sunday and achieves see "The Hump" that were recovering, I have the resources to go out and visit my people in each unit of criminal, we would contact all but we can not poor. 

- In the case of "The Hump" (Patricia Troncoso) Figueroa and not the prosecution? Are other landowners inspired terrorism laws first applied first against you? 

- I know the first part when we were accused of that (terrorists) was by Figueroa, and now he copied the idea. 

- How do you feel free? What was the first thing he did? 

-A output criminal public statements made to the local and international press.

- But these Chilean media often criticize his statements? For example MEGA TV Channel is owned by Ricardo Claro, Figueroa partner since 1950 when they studied law together at the University of Chile, Ricardo Claro is accused of providing boats as torture centers, was an adviser and ambassador of Pinochet from September 12 , 1973 

- I do not think that only MEGA (Tv) for all TV channels were interested not provide coverage, it is a shame the politicians who rule at this time. 

-I would like to inform you that the copyright of Neruda are invested by the company Figueroa Ricardo Claro 

-Let's see, I think the way it works Figueroa, is to betray the idea of the foundation of Neruda, in his will.