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Fri Apr 19, 2019, 06:41 PM

Peru: Autonomous Indigenous Group Fights Deforestation

Peru: Autonomous Indigenous Group Fights Deforestation

The Peruvian Court opened an oral process to Awajun-Wampis ethnic groups over
clashes between locals and police over land use at "Devil's Curve". | Photo: EFE

Published 19 April 2019 (12 hours 23 minutes ago)

Profit-seeking intruders have had negative effects on Wampis territory, through deforestation and water pollution, as a result of gold mining.

The Wampis Nation of Peru, the first-ever Indigenous autonomous group in the country, continues to fight back against illegal deforestation and raise awareness of land issues in the country, and subsequently the rest of the world.

The Wampis have managed to expel illegal miners from their land both directly and through notifying the national authorities. While illegal logging proves more difficult to curb, Wampi soldiers serving in battalions along the Ecuador-Peru border work with government authorities and Wampi leaders to expel intruders from the region.

In addition to mining and logging, the oil industry proves to be the biggest threat to the Wampis Nation. The Oleoducto Norperuano oil pipeline was built through the territory and has a history of spills and leaks, including 23 between 2001 and 2016.

The Wampis Nation's journey towards their governmental authority, which was achieved in 2015, is a direct response to former President Alan Garcia's repressive decrees that opened up the land to foreign companies which sought to exploit the resources for profit. Garcia died Wednesday by suicide when police officers arrived at his home to arrest him on bribery charges.


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