Michelle Bachelet, who hopes to win a second presidential term in Chile, will have to win over the growing social movement that has been heavily critical of the current right-wing administration and disillusioned with 20 years of government by the centre-left coalition.
In recent years, Chile has become a source, transit, and destination hub for human trafficking victims, experts say. According to judicial authorities, forced labour and sexual exploitation are the crimes most frequently associated with this "modern form of slavery”.
“This is paradise and they want to destroy it. This has had an enormous psychological impact on us,” says Guido Melinao, leader of the Mapuche indigenous community of Valeriano Cayicul, referring to the Neltume hydroelectric power plant project planned by the Spanish-Italian consortium Endesa-Enel.
The European Union's serious economic and financial crisis stands in stark contrast to the relative stability and decade-long growth enjoyed by Latin America and the Caribbean and could put the two blocs on equal footing, giving the Southern region more leverage to further its demands and economic growth.
More than 400 social organisations from Europe and Latin America and the Caribbean will gather on Jan. 25-27 at a Summit of the Peoples called as an alternative to the bi-regional meeting of heads of state and government to be held at the same time in the Chilean capital.
Chile's positive economic performance in 2012 is not enough to boost President Sebastián Piñera's waning popularity, as many Chileans believe the country's much-touted growth does nothing to compensate or solve decades of accumulated injustices, several analysts told IPS.
Archaeologists, environmentalists and the National Monuments Council are battling the Dakar Rally, an annual off-road race, in northern Chile, an area with a rich archaeological and natural heritage that has already lost dozens of sites key to understanding Chilean and South American prehistory.
A string of attacks in the southern Chilean region of Araucanía, where native Mapuche people are struggling for their land rights, puts the spotlight squarely on what analysts call the "supine ignorance" displayed by authorities about the country's history.
People in the streets and squares of the Colombian capital are breathing easier. The air is fresh with hope, in contrast to the former leaden and fearful atmosphere of eternal violence and interminable conflict.
The Chilean government's decision to invite companies to tender offers for mine lithium resources has been widely rejected by mining trade unions and legislators of the opposition.
The families of victims of Chile’s 1973-1990 dictatorship were shocked to find out that the names of more than 1,000 victims of forced disappearance have appeared on the on-line voter rolls generated by a new automatic registration system.
"Temporary and subcontracted workers in the copper industry are the slave labour of the 21st century. Lacking rights and social protection, they are vulnerable and defenceless," complained Cristián Cuevas, the leader of a union for outsourced Chilean copper workers.
Chile has enormous potential for producing non-conventional renewable energies (NCRE) like solar and geothermal, yet they only contribute three percent of the country's energy mix.
Indigenous groups in Chile celebrated a recent court ruling that represented the latest victory in the struggle for respect for their right to be previously consulted about major projects which directly affect their communities.
Two years after the earthquake and tsunami in south-central Chile, the worst natural disaster to hit the country in half a century, thousands of families who saw their homes destroyed are still waiting for a solution.