- Title: Bolivia's Senate enacts law to allow highway to be built through national park
- Date: 9th August 2017
- Summary: ***WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) ALEX VILCA LIMACO, REPRESENTATIVE OF THE RIO BENI QUIQUIBEY COMMUNITY, SAYING: "We indigenous people have always practised social ecology but it's not the social ecology that the government is saying. Social ecology has to do with a deep interrelationship between the environment and nature and human beings. What we are seeing with this hydroelectric dam is crossing the Isibore Secure National Park with a highway, entering the Tariquia reservation or affecting the Rosita reservation-- none of this is in any way related to social ecology." ACTIVISTS MARCHING WITH BANNER (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) ALEX VILCA LIMACO, REPRESENTATIVE OF THE RIO BENI QUIQUIBEY COMMUNITY, SAYING: "To us, President Evo Morales represents a sector of indigenous who live partially in the high areas of our territory. The indigenous peoples of the low territories have believed in him but we haven't found a positive response." VARIOUS OF PEOPLE MARCHING WITH BANNER POSTER READING 'MOTHER EARTH, PLEASE FORGIVE WHAT THIS DEMON WANTS TO DO' EXTERIOR OF CONGRESS VARIOUS OF SENATORS DISCUSSING TIPNIS LAW (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) YERKO NUNHEZ, OPPOSITION SENATOR, SAYING: "We want a highway but we want it to benefit the communities, not tear apart the heart of the TIPNIS as they want to do, to benefit those who live in Zone 7, the coca growers." SENATORS VOTING TO PASS LAW (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MILTON VARON, RULING PARTY SENATOR, SAYING: "This is the model of development that we have opted for: sustainable economic development, which as we have explained at the time is a point of balance between the intangibility that does not allow the use of natural resources and that in truth, denies the human existence in that territory declared intangible." SENATORS DURING SESSION
- Embargoed: 23rd August 2017 15:21
- Keywords: Tipnis national park and indigenous reservation highway Morales law
- Location: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA
- City: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA
- Country: Bolivia
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0036TFOOCJ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Bolivia's senate passed a law on Tuesday (August 8) removing protected status from Bolivia's Indigenous Territory and National Park of Isiboro Secure (TIPNIS), paving the road for President Evo Morales' controversial plan to build a highway through the 5,298 square mile (13,722 square km) national park.
The controversial plan that has been at the heart of Morales' drive to boost infrastructure investment in the impoverished nation, has sparked years of activism and protests.
Environmental groups claim Morales, a former coca grower, wants to use the highway to open new lands to coca cultivation and has been in discussions with Chinese construction companies that have expressed interest in projects in the region.
The highway would extend through Bolivia's Amazon region into the Beni district abutting Brazil.
At approximately a third the size of Switzerland, the park is home to 14,000 indigenous residents in 69 communities.
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