The Government of Canada warns travellers to exercise a high degree of caution in Chile due ongoing demonstrations and civil unrest.
The security advisory notes that on Oct. 18, a popular uprising started in reaction to economic measures imposed by the government. Since then, demonstrations in Santiago and other cities across the country have developed into nationwide protests and civil unrest. Further, violent incidents have occurred, including arson, looting and clashes between protesters and security forces, which have resulted in several casualties.
On Oct. 27, the Government of Chile declared a state of emergency. However, since that time, the emergency has been lifted. With this in mind, the advisory notes that travellers should:
- avoid areas where demonstrations and large gatherings are taking place
- expect a heightened security presence
- allow extra time to reach your destination
- contact your airline or tour operator to determine if the situation will disrupt your travel plans
- follow the instructions of local authorities
- monitor local media for information on ongoing demonstrations
As of Nov. 15, the Canadian government added that travellers should be aware that Chilean law prohibits political activities by foreigners. Anyone seen participating in demonstration or promoting dissent, including on social media, may be detained and/or deported.
The current advisory states that Canadians should exercise a "high degree of caution" in Chile. This means that, "There are identifiable safety and security concerns or the safety and security situation could change with little notice. You should exercise a high degree of caution at all times, monitor local media and follow the instructions of local authorities."
The advisory adds that the number of armed assaults have increased significantly since the beginning of 2019 in Chile. Tourists have been attacked, even during the daytime.