The Yanomami Park covers 37,000 square miles in the Brazilian Amazon on the Venezuelan border; it is inhabited by 27,000 Yanomami. Soaring gold prices have resulted in a massive ongoing invasion of the indigenous territory by gold miners who are well supported with monetary backing, heavy equipment and aircraft.On 3 July, a federal judge issued an emergency ruling ordering...
Closure of the border with Bolivia in response to covid-19 has exposed a legal vacuum in Argentina surrounding the consumption, importation and cultivation of coca leaves in the country’s northern provinces. Coca leaves have been used for millennia by indigenous groups in the area, as well as in Bolivia, Peru and Colombia, for medicinal and ritualistic purposes. However its usage...
Main image: Sarayaku under water during the flooding of the Bobonaza River. The community of Sarayaku lost 30 houses, 7 bridges and plantations of yucca, banana and maize. Photograph courtesy of Eriberto Gualinga of Sarayaku The Kichwa village of Sarayaku, home to 380 indigenous families, was devastated by floods in the middle of March that washed away 30 houses and...
Main image: Aerial photo of agricultural land near Ipiales, Colombia. Photo by Luis Eduardo Bernal M. 2009. In February 2019, Darío Acevedo was appointed president of Colombia's National Center for Historic Memory (CNMH) whose objective is to discover the historical truth of the country's armed conflict ‘through the recuperation, conservation and divulgation of the victims' plural memories, and through the...
The main concern of the government is to re-open the economy, and get the pipelines going again after lockdown, but they do not care about the wellbeing of our communities, who have no food, no water and no access to the cities to buy supplies.Helena Gualinga Ecuador, like its neighbour Brazil, has been hard hit by the coronavirus in terms...
This important article was originally published in Spanish in August 2019 (read the original here). Cristina Flores has translated it for LAB as a contribution to our ongoing project Voices of Latin America, represented by our book of that name, and the ongoing website which continues the work of the book. There is life and struggle beyond elections. In...

Amazonia in 5 minutes

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the first episode of a weekly podcast, “Amazonia in Five Minutes,” presented by Jessica Carey-Webb. The podcast highlights publications from Amazonia Latitude’s magazine as well as cultural tips, in a dynamic and melodic format, to the tune of local rhythms.
COVID-19 kills the elderly, those with underlying health conditions, the poor and vulnerable. It is now doing so in the Brazilian Amazon where the virus killed nine Munduruku indigenous elders in just a few days. Forest people elders are typically leaders and keepers of culture, so their loss is especially destabilizing.Officially, 218 indigenous people had died of COVID-19 and...
By Emily Gregg, edited by Mike Gatehouse, with additional material from Peru & Haiti Support Groups UK and LAB correspondents in the region.LAB has put together this eighth overview of the spread of coronavirus across the region and the reaction of governments, politicians and local communities. With our limited resources we could not hope to provide a truly comprehensive...
This article was first published by Mongabay on 27 May. You can read the original here.In April an official from IBAMA, Brazil’s environmental agency was violently assaulted by loggers and needed hospital treatment in Pará state. The incident was caught on video.The IBAMA operation was targeting illegal deforestation carried out by land grabbers, wishing to convert large areas of...

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