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Subway service in Chile's capital suspended as protest grows

Subway service in Chile's capital has suspended, trapping hundreds of thousands of commuters on their way home from work, after high school students flooded subway stations, jumping turnstiles, dodging fares and vandalizing stations as part of protests against a fare hike.

By nightfall Friday, the protests had extended throughout Santiago with young protesters setting up barricades at the entrances to subway stations. Television images showed students and others attacking police vehicles, throwing stones and burning at least one bus, along with scenes of destruction inside various metro stations.

Police who had been trying to break up the protests with tear gas and water hoses withdrew from some stations.

Chile's Carabineros stand next to students blocking the turnstile to the subway protesting against the rising cost of subway and bus fare, in Santiago, Friday, Oct. 18, 2019. (AP PhotoEsteban Felix)

Transportation Minister Gloria Hutt said "it's possible that during the next week the functioning (of the system) returns in a gradual fashion."

Students block the turnstile to the subway during a protest against the rising cost of subway and bus fare, in Santiago, Friday, Oct. 18, 2019. (AP PhotoEsteban Felix)

A man argues forcibly with a student who is blocking the turnstile to the subway as a protest against the rising cost of subway and bus fare, in Santiago, Friday, Oct. 18, 2019. The man had paid his subway ticket and wanted to get through the students blocking he way. (AP PhotoEsteban Felix)

Chile's Carabineros argue with students blocking the turnstile to the subway protesting against the rising cost of subway and bus fare, in Santiago, Friday, Oct. 18, 2019. (AP PhotoEsteban Felix)

Chilean Carabineros separate two men who were fighting during a student protest against the rising cost of subway and bus fare, in Santiago, Friday, Oct. 18, 2019. (AP PhotoEsteban Felix)