Fight for land of Rio blanco continues

For more than 8 years, Rio Blanco is fighting to get their land back. The illegal invadors have built houses and deforested almost 100 hectars of primary forest, precious herritage that belongs to the Rio blanco community. All that is missing is a judge’s stamp on an official order so that police and army can help remove the invadors. But it has been on his table for 3 years now.

Rio Blanco community has been fighting for almost a decade to get the invaders from their land, a precious 935 hectars of untouched primary rain forest deep in the jungle in province Loreto, in Ecuadorian Amazonia.

The invaders came to settle to the new land under a fraudulant promise of their leader who has charged them hundreds of dollars to deal with “all legalities of ownership”. After several unsuccesful atemps of Rio blanco representatives asking the invaders move from this land, 4 charges have been raised to court against the invaders. Rio blanco proved their ownership of this land with decades years old legal document. Yet, the judge has not moved on with issuing a removal order, and it had been delayed in his office for 3 years now. It raised a real question about corruption in juridical system only leading to additional costs for the judicial investigation of this inaction. Since the beginning of the conflict, the community has spent approximately US$35,000, all just to free its own land from illegal settlers. The invaders show forged documents and refuse to leave even though the community's right to the land has already been confirmed in court.

In the meanwhile, the invadors cut down about 100ha of the primary/original forest, damage that cannot be undone nor repaid. The community held this land as protected “socio bosque” area, promising no harm to be caused to this forest and receiving subsidies from government to caretake it. But due to the invadors, they lost already 10% of their rain forest, and with it significant funding from the governmental help project. All the money designated for development of the community and their project is being poured into court process and laywers for years now, all just to get their land free of invadors. They suffer by zero funds for their indigenous projects that create sustainable income to community to evade the threat of miners and loggers. Which is another huge pressure on all communities in the jungle where petrol or gold is to be found.

It is a long fight, and community leaders are tired of this. Fighting the corrupted system and people who have more money is an unfair fight.

Zivot postaru donated already 11 000 USD fundraised to support community’s fight several years ago. Now, once again, we feel that it has reached a point where our support is much needed, and we are raising $1,500 dollars for (we hope) the last phase of this fight. 

Byron Grefa, President of the Rio Blanco Community, joins in asking for help HERE at…C2U (prosim vlozit sem okenko s videem)

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Thank you all for helping us make the difference.