Aymara dissident denounces Evo Morales in Geneva

Rafael Arcangel Quispe Flores, leader of the Bolivian Aymara organization CONAMAQ this month denounced President Evo Morales before the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, and also before the seat in that city of the International Labor Organization (ILO), whose convention 169 outlines the responsibilities of states to indigenous peoples. Quispe especially stressed the situation at the TIPNIS indigenous reserve on the edge of Bolivia’s Amazon, threatened by a pending road project. (De-Bolivia, Dec. 5)

In Bolivia, CONAMAQ is demanding modification of two articles of the Law of Jurisdictional Precints, to allow outsiders who commit crimes on indigenous territories to be tried by indigenous authorities. CONAMAQ’s David Crispín said the law “ties the hands and feet of indigenous justice, because we cannot administer justice in the face of other actors alien to the community who can commit crimes against the community, as happened in the case of Mallku Qota.” (Erbol, Dec. 19; Erbol, Dec. 18)

Mallku Qota, in Potosí department, was the scene of a confrontation this year between local indigenous campesinos and employees of a mineral company. Potosí has seen other confrontations over the limits of indigenous autonomy.