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Complaint against the Peruvian State

November 4 2013

Petitioners: Daysi Zapata (AIDESEP). Photo credits: Eddie Arrossi
Coverage by Servindi

On Friday November 1, indigenous organizations reported the situation of isolated peoples in Peru to the Inter American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) in Washington DC and denounced the Peruvian State is not applying norms for special protection of isolated peoples.

Fasabi Daysi Zapata, Vice President of the Association for the Development of the Peruvian Rainforest (AIDESEP), said there are about eight vulnerable indigenous communities in the Territorial Reserve Kugapakori, Nahua, Nanti and others (RTKNN) and that the State did not apply a special protection regime for these populations. "Although it is not allowed to enter the reserves, actually anyone can enter, threatening them to death," said Zapata. "The protocols are only ornamental because they are not met," he complained.

The president of the Native Federation of Madre de Dios River and Tributaries (FENAMAD), Klaus Quicque Bolivar, presented a fragment of an audiovisual material with clear images of isolated indigenous peoples living in Madre de Dios. Bolivar stressed the importance of the evidence of their existence; the risks that forest concessions represent and the lack of sanctions regulations’ implementation.

Meanwhile, the lawyer César Gamboa and Executive Director of the Association Law, Environment and Natural Resources (DAR), highlighted the inadequacy of the legal framework provided by the Executive for the protection of indigenous peoples.

Finally Rocío Silva Santisteban, Executive Secretary of National Coordinator of Human Rights (CNDDHH), summarized all the complaints and petitions against the Peruvian state through the IACHR. She stressed the need to adjust the laws and plans for territorial reserves to international law standards, taking into account the consultation and participation of indigenous peoples. Santiesteban also emphasized the respect of the principles of self-determination, non-contact preference and inviolability of the indigenous peoples’ territories throughout this process. Santisteban, claimed for the annulment of forest concessions and all types of use granted in territories of indigenous peoples in isolation and the recognition of all the ancestral lands where the isolated peoples live. In the end, she proclaimed the need to establish a buffer zone to ensure the inviolability of a multiethnic territory to protect the lives of these vulnerable people.

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