After last year’s dramatic Chile mine collapse and prolonged rescue efforts covered by seemingly all the world’s media, one might think working conditions and benefits for the miners would have improved.

But they have not, and now the country’s largest state-run mining firm is facing a restructuring plan that would eliminate jobs and reduce benefits, so the country’s copper miners have gone on strike to make a point.

This week, thousands of demonstrators in Santiago joined them in the streets for solidarity rallies, but were confronted by armored police forces. As the situation escalated, police deployed tear gas and water cannons against the protesters, creating a frightening scene for European news cameras.

This video is from Euronews, broadcast July 13, 2011.