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10 Mai 2024

Zero Tolerance Initiative

Peru: CSOs sign open letter of support for AIDESEP, HRD Miguel Guimaraes and other indigenous defenders in the face of escalating attacks


"Open letter of support for AIDESEP, its vice-president Miguel Guimaraes and other indigenous human rights defenders in Peru in the face of escalating attacks and acts of intimidation", 10 May 2024

...In solidarity with the Peruvian indigenous rights federation The Interethnic Association for the Development of the Peruvian Rainforest (AIDESEP), the undersigned organizations and individuals express our grave concern about the serious risk faced by AIDESEP members, especially its vice-president Miguel Guimaraes. We urge the Peruvian State to take urgent action to put an end to the threats against Miguel Guimaraes, his family and community, and to guarantee the safety of members of AIDESEP and other indigenous human rights defenders in Peru.

...Miguel Guimaraes, a prominent leader of the indigenous ShipiboKonibo people, from the Flor de Ucayali community, vice-president of AIDESEP and ZTI Steering Group member, returned to Peru from COP 3 of the Escazu Agreement in Chile, to discover that his house had been broken into on the night of April 24. The perpetrators smashed windows, forced the doors and stole belongings. The attackers left death threats spray painted on the fence with the words “No vive” and “No vivira” (He will not live)...

Recently AIDESEP, Miguel and members of the Santa Clara de Uchunya community organized under the ‘Defence Front for the Interests of the Indigenous Community of Santa Clara de Uchunya’, have been defending the community’s collective land rights in the face of palm oil plantations and have publicly denounced that there is a coordinated smear campaign against them. Miguel has also been outspoken in denouncing the impacts of narcotics expansion in indigenous territories in the Peruvian Amazon, including in his community, Flor de Ucayali...

Peru is one of the most dangerous countries in the world for indigenous human rights defenders: threats, attacks, assassinations and smear campaigns persist against those who defend human and environmental rights. AIDESEP have documented and denounced the killing of 34 Indigenous leaders in the Peruvian Amazon since 2013...