Chile’s police chief, Mario Rozas, resigned Thursday after officers shot two minors in an incident that sparked outrage across a country already alarmed at heavy-handed security force tactics during months of social protests.
The Chile President Sebastian Pinera said in a statement he had accepted the resignation of Rozas, saying he shared “the reasons and arguments” he had given for resigning.
Chile’s leftist opposition had for months called on Rozas, who was head of the Carabineros military police, to resign following criticism from the United Nations human rights office and other organizations over police repression of the social protests.
His resignation came after a Police officers on Wednesday shot and wounded two minors, aged 17 and 14, at a residence for troubled children and adolescents in the southern city of Talcahuano.
NEWSNAIJA learned the officers had opened fire after they were attacked with sticks and stones at the center, run by the National Service for Minors.
Footage showed the adolescents rolling on the ground after they were shot in the legs.
Patricia Munoz, Children’s Ombudsman denounced the police for using firearms in an absolutely unjustified and excessive manner.
Munoz said “This situation is yet another manifestation of the horror of state violence exercised by those who, having the duty to protect children and adolescents, ultimately attack them in an unjustified and undue manner,”
UNICEF Chilean branch also condemned the shooting.
The UN Children’s organisation said. “No situation justifies the use of firearms by the Carabineros to contain incidents involving minors, especially if they are under the protection of the state,”.
Ricardo Yanez , Police second-in-command General was appointed to replace Rozas.