World Rainforest Movement

Court orders chilean company, Arauco, to return land to the Mapuche community

On September 28, the Chilean courts ruled in favor of the Ignacio Huilipán community, located in the Contulmo Commune, Bío Bío region. The ruling forces the company, Forestal Arauco (formerly Forestal Celco SA), to restitute 97 hectares of land that were usurped decades ago in order to expand its tree plantations. The court charged Arauco with having tried to prove ownership of the land in bad faith, and it recognized the “Merced Title”* from 1904 that the community claimed. See here.

Forestal Arauco made no statement regarding the usurpation of lands; it just filed an appeal against the order that decrees payment for the cost of the trial and the consequent claim for compensation for the impacts caused in the community over the last decades. See here.

(*) Property titles that the state delivered to Mapuche communities between 1884 and 1929.