“While the heavily-armed Waorani scoured the jungle to exterminate the uncontacted Taromenane tribe, leading Ecuadorian officials were in Beijing soliciting bids for new petrol concessions in its Amazon.” writes the Welsh journalist Robin Llewellyn who investigates the complicity of the Ecuadorian government in the massacres of uncontacted tribes above the oil rich Yasuni Amazon Rainforest.
“At the end of march this year, 2013, in the jungles of Ecuador’s northern orient, a great massacre of uncontacted indigenous was committed.” opens the book A Hidden Tragedy. “Accomplished in a way that was abusive and cruel. Those eliminated, above all, where women and children.”
Seventeen minutes before the book was due to be presented to the Ecuadorian public it was censored from circulation “over any medium” by none other than Judge Hilda Garces of the Judicial Unit of Violence Against Women and Family
Chief Ompore couldn’t stop smiling as he watched photos of Amazonian animals get projected across the Town Hall wall of Yarentaro – a remote village in Ecuador’s Yasuní National Park inside what oil companies call “Block 16.” It was the 14th of December 2012 and the Spanish oil giant RepSol that administers the petroleum block had funded a project as part of its Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Development Strategy “designed to alleviate pressure on the forest and to restore the ecosystem to its original state.” RepSol’s project to offset the hundreds of millions of dollars of crude oil being pumped out of Block 16 was to build a “zoo-creidero” or animal hatchery. Since big oil moved in bushmeant had become increasingly scarce in the Waorani tribe’s formerly bountiful hunting grounds but once the zoo-creidero was completed those same wild animals getting projected against the wall could be bred for food in captivity. On the 5th of March 2013, less than three months after these photos were taken, Ompore Omeway was murdered. His body and that of his wife Buganey were found impaled with spears inside RepSol’s Block 16 and the prime suspects were an uncontacted Amazonian tribe inside the Yasuní National Park called the Taromenane. Before the month of March ended an estimated 30 men, women and children of the Taromenane tribe were massacred in a battle that pitched wooden spears against modern weaponry. Two Taromenane girls, aged 3 and 6, were kidnapped by those that killed their tribe while members of the Ecuadorian government spent seven months downplaying the massacre. Some even casted doubt on whether the Taromenane still exist. This uncontacted tribe that is now fighting for survival against genocide live on lands that hold an estimated 846 million barrels of crude oil. Amazon Oil Highways & Illegal…
As the Ecuadorian government begins drilling for oil in the Yasuni National Park – one of the most biodiverse regions on Planet Earth – human rights lawyer Luis Xavier Solis discusses the existential threat of genocide facing the uncontacted tribes that inhabit this UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve.
Lo que tienen en común todas las nacionalidades y los pueblos en aislamiento constreñido o voluntario es que son pueblos indígenas, y por lo tanto se les debe tratar como tales, asumir su existencia, y tener en cuenta en toda política que tenga que ver con sus derechos, territorio, medio ambiente, pero con mayor atención por su situación especial. – escriba Luis Xavier Solis Tenesaca, un abogado de derechos humanos
What happens to a democracy when its journalists and artists are too afraid to criticise those in power and express themselves freely?
This is one of the questions we ask Vilma Vargas – a rising talent in the Ecuadorian art scene who was twice selected for the “World Press Cartoon” in Portugal and awarded first prize at RESET 11.11.11 in Mexico for best caricaturist.
Today on Chekhov’s Kalashnikov we are going to talk with Luis Xavier Solis Tenesaca who works for the Comittee of Human Rights of Orellana in the Ecuadorian Amazon. This organization which works closely with UNHCR is in charge of protecting and defending some of the worlds most vulnerable and forgotten people – refugees that have fled Colombians civil war in search for asylum and a better life in Ecuador.
oy en Chekhov’s Kalashnikov vamos a hablar con Luis Xavier Solis Tenesaca cuyo trabajo es proteger y defender a algunas de personas más vulnerables y olvidadas del mundo – refugiados que han huido de la guerra civil Colombiana en busca de asilo en la Amazonía Ecuatoriana.
In the dense cloud forests that cover the western ridge of the Ecuadorian Andes an active guerrilla movement called the Pachamama Army roams.
Unlike other guerrilla armies further north inside this biodiversity hotspot biologists call the Tumbes-Chocó-Magdalena, this movement believes in non-violent struggle over violent subversion.
Their revolution is one of consciousness via connection with nature and they are armed to the teeth with seeds, saplings, and shovels instead of guns and shells.
For Chekhovs Kalashnikovs very first interview on Change Makers we will be talking with environmental activist Chris Canaday from California about the broken and dangerous state of human and water sanitation systems and the solution to this problem that is damaging our environment and health.