Bruno Kreisky Foundation

for Human Rights

Vicaria de la Solidaridad (Priest of the Solidarity) (Chile)

In 1973 the Cardinal of the Catholic Church and the Archbishop of Santiago de Chile, Monsignor Raul Silva Henriquez, in cooperation with other churches in the country, formed the Cooperation Committee for Peace in Chile. It is an organization whose members try to establish aid and social support for victims of human rights violations that occurred during the military coup on September 11th. Three years later the Vicaria de la Solidaridad remained an institution that supports the Cooperation Committee and carries out its work. They worked especially hard from 1974, until the year which they received the Bruno Kreisky Prize, 1984.

Innumerable volunteers advised, helped, and supported thousands of disadvantaged people and those who were politically oppressed. A special counseling service that was made up of lawyers took on the interests of political prisoners. They contributed immensely to the defense of human rights, even though their lives were constantly threatened due to their collaboration. Many people, regardless of their political views, were helped in the eleven years of the Chilean military dictatorship. Vicaría de la Solidaridad was an essential human rights institution during the military regime. They ended their activities in the year 1992. The history of their intensive work over the course of twenty years can be found in a large collection of documents, as well as in the memories of Chileans. Vicaría de la Solidaridad developed into a research center and archive in 1993 and is now known as „Foundation for the Documentation and Archiving of Vicaría de la Solidaridad.“

This Institution contains documents and information concerning the work of Vicaria, as well as the Cooperation Committee for Peace in Chile. All of the information about human rights violations during the military dictatorship, as well as all the documents about the victims from September 1973 to March 1990 can be found there.