October 12th: ‘Today, the situation of the indigenous peoples and communities of our country is extremely precarious: their territories are fragmented for lack of legal demarcation; their lands are threatened by the presence of illegal mining and irregular [armed] groups; the criminalization of indigenous protests has included deaths and a process of co-optation of the indigenous leadership has increased through the creation of parallel indigenous organisations dependent on the ruling party of government. As if this was not enough, indices of poverty have also risen in the very heart of indigenous communities.’
With these words the Working Group on Indigenous Affairs of the University of the Andes in Merida, Venezuela, criticises the administration for its manipulative policy towards the country’s indigenous peoples. The statement also notes that this decline in respect for the rights of the indigenous peoples of the country has increased during the two years since Venezuela repudiated the jurisdiction of the InterAmerican system of human rights.
Statement by GTAI [Spanish only]