İrem UZUN -TDO- Chile’s embattled president has been forced to cancel two major international summits after government concessions failed to defuse weeks of violent protests that have seen thousands of arrests, left at least 20 dead and sent shock waves across Latin America. Sebastian Piñera made the announcement on Wednesday morning, telling reporters Chile would no longer be able to host November’s APEC(Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation)trade summit and the COP25 UN climate conference the following month.Chile's decision comes amid global climate protests, including a week of strikes led by environmental activist Greta Thunberg last month.

World leaders including Donald Trump and China’s leader, Xi Jinping, had been due to attend the first event while climate champions including the teenage activist Greta Thunberg were expected at the second. Piñera blamed the “difficult circumstances” Chile was facing for the decision and said his government’s primary concern had to be “fully restoring public order, security and social peace”.“This has been a very difficult decision – which has caused us great pain – because we understand perfectly the importance (of the events) for Chile and for the world,” president said.

In a statement, the UN's climate change executive secretary, Patricia Espinosa, said: "Earlier today, I was informed of the decision by the government of Chile not to host COP25 in view of the difficult situation that the country is undergoing. We are currently exploring alternative hosting options”.

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