Peru: court rules for indigenous sovereignty | World War 4 Report

Peru’s Supreme Court on Sept. 26 ruled in favor of the Shipibo and Ese’Eja indigenous community of Tres Islas in the southern Amazon basin region of Madre de Dios, finding that the rainforest dwellers have the right to bar a road that illegal miners and timber cutters seek to build through their territory. Indigenous organizations hailed the ruling as an important precedent for peoples trying to halt mining, logging or oil drilling on their lands. “We think this will serve as an example for other indigenous groups to take their cases to the top court,” said Jaime Tapullima Pashanase, president of the Ethnic Council of Kechwa Peoples of the Amazon (CEPKA). Added Julio Ibañez Moreno, a lawyer for Peru’s trans-Amazonian alliance AIDESEP: “I consider this ruling very important for indigenous communities. This is an advance in terms of the rights they have been demanding.”

Others expressed caution at the ruling, noting that it came in a case concerning activity that was already officially illegal. “The sentence said every right, even the right to property, has limits, and the state decides those limits,” said Javier La Rosa with the Legal Defense Institute in Lima. “That’s dangerous. Because of that, the state can suddenly say ‘your land is part of a concession.’”

via Peru: court rules for indigenous sovereignty | World War 4 Report.

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