Bad news from Peru about the deaths of indigenous protestors and police.
"President Alan Garcia labored Saturday to contain Peru's worst political violence in years, as nine more police officers were killed in a bloody standoff with Amazon Indians fighting his efforts to exploit oil and gas on their native lands.
The new deaths brought to 22 the number of police killed — seven with spears — since security forces moved early Friday to break up a roadblock manned by 5,000 protesters.
Protest leaders said at least 30 Indians, including three children, died in the clashes. Authorities said they could confirm only nine civilian deaths, but cabinet chief Yehude Simon told reporters that 155 people had been injured, about a third of them with bullet wounds."
"On Saturday, a judge ordered the arrest of protest group leader Alberto Pizango on sedition charges for allegedly inciting the violence, said the president of Peru's supreme court, Javier Villa Stein.
On Friday, Pizango accused the government of "genocide" for attacking what he called a peaceful protest. Indians have been blocking roads, waterways and a state oil pipeline intermittently since April 9, demanding that Peru's government repeal laws they say help foreign companies exploit their lands.
The laws, decreed by Garcia as he implemented a Peru-U.S. free trade pact, open communal jungle lands and water resources to oil drilling, logging, mining and large-scale farming, Indian leaders and environmental groups say."
Seems to be familiar doesn't it?
and as you would expect:
"Garcia defends the laws as necessary to help develop Peru."
What's the problem?
"Indians say Garcia's government does not consult them in good faith before signing contracts that could affect at least 30,000 Amazon Indians across six provinces."
"Last month, Roman Catholic bishops in the region issued a statement calling the complaints legitimate.
Protests prompted Garcia to declare a state of emergency on May 9, suspending some constitutional rights in four jungle provinces including Amazonas."
Indigenous fights for rights are occuring all around this world, not just here.