Evictions and violence used against indigenous communities in Northern Argentina

Call for support from the CAPOMA collective- Jujuy, Argentina, August 17 th 2008.
link to call for support and background history

Oscar, a colleague from Salta and member of the Olga Aredes Centre, CAPOMA, informs us on the severe situtation taking place in Northern Argentina. There are contineous evictions taking place and violence being committed to the inhabitants which resist to leave there lands for soy. Soy producers are acting with impunity against the inhabitants of the guaraní communities, attacking them violently, while the government and police justify their actions with the argument that the soy producers are the "rightfull" land owners.

update 18th of August, 2008

Good news from Jujuy: Act of land recuperation of the community JASY ENDY GUASU Lunes,
by Oscar, el Hijo de los Montes, CAPOMA, Jujuy

After more than 20 days of precarious occupation with children, sick people and elders, yesterday the evicted families of El TALAR received sanitary help brought by a truck of the local government of Jujuy. With a lot of courage and indignation they turned the oficial aid down, sending a message to the provincial government that the latter are in the first place responsible for so much injustice. Their message was direct - they were going to re-enter in their land whatever it takes, as they have already suffered enough and it no longer matters to them if they again start firing at them.

Also, on August 17th, a group of Guaraní indians went to the evicted site and noticed that soy producer Strisich began deforesting the site. Deforestation machinery and electrified fences were present and nothing was left of the place.

On August 18th, from mid-day on various social organisation from Jujuy and Guaraní communities of the yungas of Jujuy, jointly went to the community JASY ENDY GUASU, to retake their ancestral lands. Between 1000 and 1500 people realised a symbolic act. All kinds of actions and further legal steps will continue to demand from the government that they respect and comply with the laws and the rights that have been thoroughly been violated, insulting the history and lifes of the native people.

Guaraní communities and social organisation of Jujuy ask international solidarity and attention for this case. They ask to continue sending letters in order to pressure the provincial government. Comuniquees of solidarity are also appreciated.

Please send protest letters against the eviction:

Send in copy to: capoma_ddhh()yahoo.com.ar, Jasy-endy-guasu()hotmail.com, grupoaccionddhh()yahoo.com.ar

For more information:
+54 (0)388-154036819 (Esteban Coronel de la Comunidad El Talar)
+54 (0)388-415517754 (Diego Comunidad El Talar)
+54 (0)3877-15668410 (Oscar Delegado CAPOMA)

On August 17th 2008, we were travelling to Embarcación and from there on 50 km towards the interior of the chaco (the dry region with Chaco woods, not the Chaco Province) untill we reached Misión Chaqueña. There, various Wichis communities are resisting the advancing deforestation committed by soy producers. The Wichi communities and others in the neighbourhood of Misión Chaqueña are being surrounded by a regional soy producer called Peñalver. The Wichis have lots of conviction to defend their lands and no longer accept attacks. The community invited us to participate in a meeting to commonly try to save their territory.

Leaving from Embarcación you face kilometers of areas that have been deforested over the past 10 years. Now there is only loneliness and indigeneous communities that migrated and fled deaper into the Chaco. But now soy is also reaching these places.

We also visited to the Guaraní community Jase Endí Guasu in El TALAR, Department San Martín (Ledesma) Jujuy. This community suffered an eviction on monday July 28th. They are furious with the government of Jujuy as they told them that they would take measures concerning their problems with water supply and housing; they would install water tanks and construct houses. Nevertheless they don't see them as the rightful land owners, declaring that "they dont find any documents of the period between 1996 and 2000 - the period in which the same government gave them the lands - and therefor the legal papers that soy producer Strisich was obtaining are valid".

On the 14th of August, close to the zone where the eviction took place, a guaraní women in companion of her children, was gathering the animals that got saved from the eviction. She was attacked by Strisich and two gunmen at his service. Strisich, dressed in combat clothing and wearing two guns in his belt, chased her with a knife.

When the community wanted to denounce this act in the local police office, they did not accept it, arguing that Strisich is the land owner. Pablo Pelasso, lawyer known for the cases he brings forward against violaters of Jujuys, in the end made a denounce of homocide intent and threaths to the woman.