“There has been a series of very interesting processes in Latin America – in Venezuela, Bolivia, and Ecuador. However, none of these new processes have managed to overcome the economic structures of extractivism,” said Alberto Acosta, ex-President of Ecuador’s Constituent Assembly.
Representatives of the original peoples and nationalities of the Americas returned to Ecuador last week for the twentieth anniversary of a historic gathering that advanced hemispheric unity. The Continental Encounter of the Original Nationalities and Peoples of Abya Yala met from June 14 to 16. Abya Yala is a word for the Americas in the language of the Kuna people in Panama that has gained broad usage as an aboriginal term for the hemisphere. […]
An official government site reveals that the Correa government plans on investing $180,000 on “social and environmental studies” during 2010 to determine the feasibility of the Junin copper deposit. The study would be the first step for the newly-created national mining company to try to reactivate a mining project which has resulted in two transnational mining companies being defeated by Intag’s communities and organizations. Now the stage is being set for possible confrontations between communities and local governments pitted against the national government and its national mining company.
Ecuador’s National Assembly President Fernando Cordero closed a highly-anticipated plenary session last Thursday by declaring that the controversial new water law would not be voted on until there has been prior consultation with communities. Cordero’s unilateral decision means that final treatment of the law will likely be delayed for months.
Marcia Ramírez hopes to set a precedent in Canadian courts that will benefit peasant farmers and indigenous peoples across the Global South. A community leader in her mid-20s, Ramírez is one of three Ecuadorian plaintiffs suing the Toronto Stock Exchange for over $1.5 billion.
Amidst deep tensions over Ecuador’s new water law, currently in its final debate within the National Assembly, campesino farmers in the southern province of Azuay celebrated a moment of victory on Wednesday night. The President of the Provincial Court overturned a preventative prison sentence against five community leaders who had been detained and charged during peaceful road blockades the day before on lack of evidence.
On Tuesday, Ecuador’s National Telecommunications Commission retracted a December decision to shut down an indigenous radio station. The commission, known as CONATEL, had previously determined that the “The Voice of Arutam” was responsible for inciting indigenous protesters to violence during a strike in September 2009 that cost the life of an indigenous bilingual teacher, Bosco Wisum.
President Rafael Correa, elected in 2006, and reelected in 2009 under the new constitution, is leading Ecuador through what he calls a new “revolution,” one bringing the creation of “socialism for the twenty-first century.” I recently returned from Ecuador, on hand for a bicentennial meeting of historical scholars, and had the opportunity to meet with leading political advisors and talk with ordinary women and men about the changes coming to their country. I came away with one inescapable conclusion: United States policy is completely out of step with the needs and concerns of Ecuador and Latin America.
Copyright 2003-2018 Upside Down World