The Rendon Group Snapshot Report – 15 September 2014

by TRG Alerts Admin on September 15, 2014

The Rendon Group Snapshot Report

(15SEPT14)

Each week The Rendon Group’s media analysts will focus on a different continent and a different issue affecting that continent. As always, we remain available to answer any questions you may have and to provide additional information upon request. For more information regarding The Rendon Group’s products and services, please contact us at Alert@Rendon.com or +1-202-745-4900.

Source: Presidencia de Chile, via Vice.com

Terrorism in Chile

This week’s Snapshot focuses on the recent bombings in Chile and subsequent government anti-terrorism actions. Homemade bombs targeting a metro station and a shopping center have injured more than 20 people in the last week. It is assumed that the perpetrators are anti-government or anarchists. The government has reached out to foreign security agencies to assist in identifying those responsible. The United States has offered the help of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Chile has also considered reinstating the use of undercover agents.

News Summary of events during the week of 08SEP – 14SEP:

08SEP14: A bomb rocked a Santiago metro station, injuring seven people. (AFP)

09SEP14: President Bachelet condemned the bombing at an underground metro shopping center in Santiago as “one of the most cowardly we have seen.” (UPI)

09SEP14: The government announced legal reforms designed to strengthen the police and prosecutors. (EFE)

10SEP14: Two homemade bombs exploded at a shopping center in the resort city of Vina del Mar. (AFP)

10SEP14: The government sought help from foreign security agencies in identifying those responsible for an explosion that injured 14 people at a subway station in the capital. (AP)

11SEP14: Foreign Affairs Minister Heraldo Munoz said that U.S. ambassador Michael Hammer offered the help of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in delving into Monday’s terrorist attack. (XIN)

12SEP14: The police said they arrested three men in the northern city of Antofagasta carrying dynamite and bomb ingredients. (AFP)

13SEP14: Chile to seek to reinstate the use of undercover agents in its intelligence services after a series of bomb attacks in the Santiago area. (AFP)

Sample of Twitter handles regarding Chile:

@fiturrieta – Felipe Iturrieta, Reuters Correspondent in Chile

@longdrivesouth – Daniel Hernandez, Mexico bureau chief for Vice News

@LuisAndresHenao – Luis Andres Henao, AP Correspondent in Chile

@gideon_long – Freelance journalist based in Santiago, Chile.  Works for BBC and the Economist.

@maxcolodro – Professor at University Adolfo Ibanez and columnist for the newspaper La Tercera in Santiago, Chile.

Sample of Third Party Validators regarding Chile:

Guillermo Holzmann, Political scientist, University of Valparaiso

“They [the bombers] are against political parties and consider that Chile’s state structure should be radically changed and not doing so legitimizes the use of violent actions.”

–       Chile Vows to Apprehend Those Responsible for Subway-Station Attack, 09SEP14, Wall Street Journal

Nick Levine, Political analyst in Santiago

“If you look back even to the times of the dictatorship, when resistance groups of different types were fighting against the dictatorship, I cannot think of any particular case when somebody placed a bomb in a public place with people in it.”

–       Chilean Government Invokes Anti-terrorism Law After Attack, 09SEP14, Miami Herald

Cynthia Arnson, Director of the Wilson Center’s Latin America program

“This is not a country that is racked by insecurity, but these bombs that have gone off in fairly rapid succession have created a sense of concern about what’s going on and opened up a debate about what the government is doing in the security arena. The main pressure is on the government to investigate and prosecute the people responsible for these incidents. If it fails to do that, and the explosions continue, the government is going to be faced with a very distinct problem.”

–       Blast In Chile Is 29th Bomb This Year, But Perpetrators Remain Mysterious, 09SEP14, International Business Times

Ricardo Hausmann, Former chief economist, Inter-American Development Bank

“Despite the $270 billion corporate honey pot, Chile’s private sector has ‘one of the lowest rates of research and development in the OECD.’”

–       Chile bombings shake Latin America’s model nation, 15SEP14, Bloomberg

Claudio Fuentes, Director, Political Science Program at Diego Portales, University of Santiago

“So far, nothing is publicly known about who committed these acts or their motives.  There are opposing agendas seeking to use social demands to explain this phenomenon of violence, and that’s a mistake.”

–       Shocked Chile searches for answers on bombings, 11SEP14, AFP

Sample of open source research conducted by TRG analysts related to bomb attacks in Chile:

1. Chile arrests three carrying explosives

Media: Agence France-Presse (AFP)

Byline: N/A

Date: 12 September 2014

SANTIAGO, Sept 12, 2014 (AFP) – Chilean police said they arrested three men Friday in the northern city of Antofagasta carrying dynamite and bomb ingredients, after a series of recent homemade bomb attacks rattled the country.

“They had an ignition system prepared using a slow fuse and a detonator, an explosives system, a charge prepared with dynamite divided into two parts, a detonation cord… and a box of shrapnel,” the police communications office said.
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2. Chile official says subway blast apparently a ‘terrorist act’

Media: Los Angeles Times

Byline: Jorge Poblete

Date: 9 September 2014

A bomb exploded in a Santiago subway station Monday, injuring at least 10 people in what Chilean security authorities said appeared to be a “terrorist act.”

It was at least the 30th blast in Chile this year in which authorities suspected anarchists and extremists.

The explosion “has all the characteristics of a terrorist act that has been carried out to cause harm to innocent persons,” said government spokesman Alvaro Elizalde.

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3. Chile condemns ‘cowardly bomb attack’ in Santiago

Media: BBC

Byline: N/A

Date: 9 September 2014

Chilean President Michelle Bachelet has condemned a bomb attack on a shopping center in a busy metro station in the capital Santiago on Monday.

The attack, in which 14 people were injured, is one of the worst since democracy was restored in 1990.

Ms Bachelet called it a “terrorist act, one of the most cowardly we have seen”.

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4. Chile seeks to reinstate undercover intelligence agents

Media: Agence France-Presse (AFP)

Byline: N/A

Date: 13 September 2014

SANTIAGO, Sept 13, 2014 (AFP) – Chile on Saturday said it would seek to reinstate the use of undercover agents in its intelligence services after a series of bomb attacks in the Santiago area.

Although the National Intelligence Agency (ANI) has the right to use informants, it is not permitted to use undercover agents.

But after recent bombings, the government is moving to strengthen its intelligence services, including putting forward a bill in Congress that would reinstate the use of undercover operatives.

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5. Subway Bombing in Chile Provokes Fears Ahead of Coup Anniversary

Media: Vice.com

Byline: Nicolás Ríos

Date: 14 September 2014

A bomb exploded Monday in a subway station shopping center in Santiago, Chile, injuring 14 people and stoking fears of more attacks ahead of a significant date for Chilean society — the September 11, 1973 anniversary of the coup d’etat that marked the start of Chile’s military dictatorship.

The government called the explosion a terrorist attack and said it would invoke Chile’s controversial “anti-terrorist law” as investigators hunted for at least one suspect who placed the explosive device — a fire extinguisher filled with gunpowder and set to a timed detonator — inside a trash can in a shopping center at the underground Escuela Militar station.

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