Waorani leader Nemonte Nenquimo and A’i Kofan leader Alexandra Narvaez recently co-published a powerful op-ed, Our Territories, Our Decision, in Ecuador’s most widely distributed newspaper. We are excited to share it with you today.
As the Waorani and Kofan prepare to fight a court battle in the coming months that may well determine the future of the Amazon in Ecuador and of our planet, Nemonte and Alexandra invite us to look back at history to understand how the legal justifications of the Spanish colonizers hundreds of years ago are at their core the same as those used by government and industry today.
As Nemonte and Alexandra describe, “What the Ecuadorian governments and industries call ‘free, prior and informed consultation’ is nothing more than the following: they give us confusing and misleading information about what they want to do in our territories, and if we do not agree, they threaten us by waging war against us again.”
Read the full article here:
We cannot allow this to continue. We have a massive opportunity to change course and to defend Indigenous peoples’ right to free, prior, and informed consent and self-determination for their territories.
As the Waorani and Kofan prepare for their case to be heard by the Constitutional Court of Ecuador, we need your help to apply global pressure so that the ruling upholds respect for Indigenous peoples’ rights to decide over the future of their territories and cultures.
Stay tuned over the next week for important new opportunities to get involved and support the decision-making power of the next generation of Indigenous leaders and forest defenders. Because what happens in the Amazon matters everywhere.
The Amazon Frontlines Team
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