Friday, June 12, 2009

Solidarity protests held throughout Peru

Numerous marches in unity with protesting indigenous communities were held throughout Peru yesterday.

An estimated 20,000 people rallied in the streets of Lima calling on President Alan Garcia and the government to permanently revoke a series of controversial land-use edicts in the Amazon. "The jungle isn't for sale," chanted some marchers who also accused the government of covering up what really occurred in a series of violent confrontations last weekend between police officers and protesters in northern Peru.

Though most of yesterday’s nationwide protests were peaceful, Lima police launched tear gas at some marchers who threw stones and Molotov cocktails at the Congress building.

The country’s legislature voted on Wednesday to temporarily lift the presidential decrees yet there’s still plenty of tension in the Peruvian Amazon. While indigenous groups worry that they will lose their lands in the name of energy exploration and development, the impoverished region’s economy has been virtually paralyzed:

Online Sources- YouTube, New York Times, AP, Los Angeles Times

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