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ARGENTINA / ECUADOR
Regional commission seeks justice for indigenous rights abuses
5/5/2010
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Inter-American Commission of Human Rights blames governments for torture and negligence.

The Washington-based Inter-American Commission of Human Rights, a branch of the Organization of American States, has presented two law suits against the governments of Argentina and Ecuador for negligence in two human rights abuse cases against indigenous citizens.

The body presented the two cases to the San Jose, Costa Rica-based Inter-American Court of Human Rights, it said on May 5.

In Ecuador, the Commission accused the country´s government of acting to the detriment of the indigenous Kichwa people in the Sarayaku, in Ecuador´s jungle, who have been vehemently against oil drilling in their area, particularly by the Italian oil company Agip.

“This situation has made it impossible for the indigenous community to seek its means of subsistence in its territory and has restricted its right to movement within the territory,” said the Commission. “The case also refers to the denial of judicial protection and due process to the Kichwa people of Sarayaku.”

On April 29, community members said they were attacked by a group of men with dynamite and guns, seriously injuring three people, according to reports from the region.

The Commission also filed a case, blaming the state for a lax investigation of the “arbitrary detention, torture and forced disappearance” of Iván Eladio Torres in October 2003, in Argentina´s Chubut province, who had reportedly been whisked away at dawn by armed agents.

“The case was sent to the Court based on the need to conduct a diligent investigation for the purpose of obtaining truth, justice, and reparation for the damage caused by the violations perpetrated against Iván Eladio Torres and his relatives,” said the Commission.
–Latinamerica Press.


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