Following months of uproar over suspected violations of freedom and disproportionate use of force by the country’s security forces, Chilean police chief Mario Rozas resigned on Thursday 19 November.
Reuters stated that his resignation came shortly after police officers reportedly shot and killed two boys during a raid on Wednesday 17 November at the Chilean Child Protection Service offices in Talcahuano, a coastal port city south of the capital, Santiago.
President Sebastian Pinera, who approved Mario Rozas’ resignation, said he expressed the “reasons and arguments” he had put forward for resigning. He praised and respected the role of the police chief, noting that Rozas had worked “at an extremely difficult and complicated time.”
Last year after thousands of Chileans were wounded in clashes with police amid mass demonstrations over injustice, Rozas, who would be replaced by police general Ricardo Yanez (his second in command), came under heavy criticism.
Those events sparked a surge of reports of violence from global and national rights organizations against the country’s security forces.
Though all of those incidents are currently under investigation, Rozas has long denied that police leadership has systemically or in any way condoned those crimes.