Klein should apologize to Chilean community

[Edmonton] The Alberta Federation of Labour today called upon Ralph Klein to apologize to Alberta's Chilean community for his comments endorsing the military coup and human rights abuses of dictator Pinochet.

"Most of the Chilean community in Alberta are here because they fled the bloody repression of the Pinochet regime," said AFL President Kerry Barrett. "Many of them lost family and friends to Pinochet's police state and its reign of terror - others were themselves victims of illegal imprisonment and torture."

"When a democratically-elected government leader endorses a dictator who used armed force to overthrow and murder another democratically-elected leader (President Salvador Allende), there is something deeply wrong," said Barrett.

"His remarks are deeply offensive, not just to the Chilean community in Alberta - but to all Albertans who uphold our democratic traditions and values," concluded Barrett. "I am not sure what kind of 'research' he did on the subject for his student essay, but he clearly didn't do much thinking about what the events in Chile actually meant to the men and women and children who had to live through them - nor of the fact that Pinochet has been indicted for human rights abuses."


For more information contact:

Kerry Barrett, AFL President at 483-3021 (wk)     or 720-8945 (cell)


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