A group of 33 women has taken over the coal mine “Chiflón del Diablo” in Lota, close to Santiago de Chile.
The group is protesting massive layoffs from the Military Job Corps, and have threatened to start a hunger strike 3000 feet below ground, if their jobs are not restored.
The women descended this morning, and locked themselves at the heart of the mine, currently a tourist attraction. They decided to come down as a group of 33, seeking to pressure the government into responding to them the same way they responded to the miners of San José.
Reports indicate there are hundreds of supporters and sympathizers protesting and rallying outside the mine.
Javier Matamala, who is in charge of the mine said “this act must end in a pacific way, to avoid damages to this historic location”
More than 8,000 people have lost their jobs since the end of the employment stimulus program implemented by the government following February’s Earthquake.