Freddy Lacio reports for El Deber’s website:
At least 34 wounded, four of them seriously, is the result of a clash between peasants from the municipalities of Quillacas, Oruro, and Coroma, Potosí, for the possession of tracts of land suitable for cultivation of quinoa, found in the boundary between of both departments and which are claimed as theirs by both sides.
According to the Oruro press media, the confrontation between the two communities was generated when around 300 settlers of Potosí attached those of the community of Oruro that were working on the land in dispute, in Rodeo community, province Ladislado Cabrera, Oruro.
Quillacas farmers claim that they arrived on the scene with around 20 tractors to start ploughing, when they were attacked by hundreds of potosinos.
However, the Potosi version states an orureño “subjugation” of the land next to Viluyo (indigenous district of Coroma) Candelaria. The limits of Coroma, says Alfredo Ramos (former limits delegate), reported that the orureños entered the area with tractors to plant quinoa, which upset the potosinos, who reacted.
The concrete [and unfortunate result] is that the sides clashed with stones, sticks and sharp weapons and dynamite, causing wounds of varying severity in 25 orureños peasants and nine potosinos.
In the first instance, the wounded were evacuated to Puki community potosino side, but the most serious were transferred to the hospital of second level of Pequereque (Oruro) and hence, two were derived to the capital Oruro.
A report by journalist Imar Antezana, WKU radio of Oruro, indicates that, shortly after 19: 00 [March 1, 2012], Reimy Véliz and Silverio Cristóbal Pérez reached Oruro city’s General hospital. The first presents a fracture in the left arm, but is the second which is more serious.
According to Antezana, Pérez was affected by the explosion of dynamite (which apparently he manipulated), causing him serious injuries on the hands and the face. The prognosis of the injured person is reserved and doctors who take care of him, [believe there is] little chance of surviving.
Potosino Senator by the MAS, Eduardo Maldonado was the first to point out that the conflict is generated from the interest that have access to land for the planting of quinoa farmers in both departments.
The Governor of Oruro, Tito Santos, accused the community of Potosí for igniting the brawl and excused his fellow orureños, who only went to “clean-up the soil” in lands of the Oruro jurisdiction.
By his side, potosino Governor, Felix Gonzales, is suing the authors of making illegal appropriation of potosino lands in the area of Kusillo Ck’asa, he is charging them for the alleged crime of incitement to commit a crime, unlawful association, land overtake and others.
A hundred police custody the place.
This issue can turn even more deadly and uglier if the central government does not enforce the law, takes the initiative and assumes the responsibility to allow Bolivian citizens to live peacefully and in harmony. Anarchical attitudes must stop once and for all!!