The day before the new “indigenous” holiday that was invented by current Bolivian government, attacks to TIPNIS reassume…
Ruy D’Alencar reports for El Deber:
TOOK PLACE IN SAN PABLO OF THE ISIBORO RIVER
Pitched fight between indigenous revives the tension inside the Tipnis
The calm waters of San Pablo de el Isiboro (Beni) are troubled since Thursday [6/20/13]. At 10:00am when the indigenous leaders of the substation of the Tipnis and the Conisur broke to a fist-fight, right after Fernando Vargas and his followers broke in the meeting organized by Gumercindo Pradel, with the support of the congressman Eleuterio Guzmán (MAS), [meeting that had the purpose of] not recognizing the eighth and ninth March leaders and to give the OK to the road Villa Tunari-San Ignacio de Moxos through the heart of the Park.
In this little hut of the indigenous territory and Isiboro Sécure National Park (Tipnis) clashed both sides of a conflict that has shaken the Government of Evo Morales in 2011, and under military siege, said Pedro Nuni, Secretary of the governorate of Beni. There arrived an Envoy of El Deber.
Around 11:00, in the cabildo of corregidores installed in the village schoolhouse, Vargas’ allies stormed and Pradel was condemned to receive sanctions instructed by community justice: was going to be spanked with belt accused of allying to the Government, going against his own and bring the military.
“It was a clash and at least five brothers on both sides were hurt, although only with scratches,” features Nuni, who argues that the Government drilled the indigenous organization and led to the confrontation. Carlos Fabricano, leader of Alto Secure, akin to Pradel, not arrived in time to meet, but just said that “hit-men people” forced to flee to the confraternity of Pradel.
Before noon, San Pablo de el Isiboro became a war melee, Indians against Indians. Pradel fled, but was captured. And when he began to receive punishment, his followers fought against the subcentral Tipnis’ people. A few minutes later, reduced the 30 envoys from the Conisur, with more calm tempers, Pradel was forced to sign a resolution in which it undertook to not try to ignore the leaders again and not to bring military back.
Siege in Gundonovia
Nuni, who was admitted to the Park after the fight, denounced the presence of 20 soldiers mobilized in barges by the Isiboro River, joining Fabricano, which did not arrive on time for the meeting of San Pablo and he fell back in Gundonovia. “They were preparing a fence with wires there to prevent the brothers who went to San Pablo to return,” he said.
Adolfo Chávez, leader of the Confederation of indigenous Peoples of Bolivia (Cidob) argumentative to the Government, is concerned that after the fight, Vargas rivals are ‘parapet’ in Gundonovia and anything can provoke new clashes. Melva Hurtado, leader of the pro-Government Cidob, said Pradel and “brethren” are injured and will receive attention in Trinidad. Hurtado accuses the governorate of Beni to have supported Fernando Vargas and his people. The conflict opened another wound
Soldiers harass a press team
Samy Schwartz, photojournalist who covered the conflict in San Pablo de el Isiboro, recorded the siege of military personnel yesterday, happened on a road to return to Trinidad.
“The Conisur said that a foreign journalist attacked Gumercindo Pradel and the military harassed us so”, said Schwartz.
According to Carlos Fabricano, leader of Alto Secure and akin to the Government, people of the MSM in Santa Cruz and a ‘gringo’ reporter attacked the leaders of the Conisur.
On the way to Trinidad, Lázaro Tacóo, Santa Cruz, indigenous leader, was also intercepted by a gang of the armed forces who interrogated him in search of a foreign journalist. In the end, the vehicle was released.
It is sad to see how a government who portrayed itself as the protector of mother earth and defender of the indigenous, takes active participation, divides the indigenous organizations and pushes relentlessly to cut in half OUR national park.