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Today, Wednesday, July 25, 2012, the Inter-American Court has informed us of its ruling in the case that we have been following against the Ecuadorian State in the Inter-American Human Rights System since 2003.

In said sentence, the Court declares the international responsibility of the Ecuadorian State for the violation against the People of Sarayaku of the right to prior consultation, communal property, life, judicial protection and other important rights. In doing so, it recognizes that after a struggle that has lasted a decade, Sarayaku demonstrated that the rights of our People were violated.

The reparation measures that the State must comply with by virtue of the judgment include that in the face of projects for the exploration or extraction of natural resources, or investment or development plans of any other nature that imply potential damages to the Sarayaku territory or to essential aspects of its worldview or of their cultural life and identity, the Sarayaku People must be previously, adequately and effectively consulted, in full accordance with the international standards applicable to the matter. Already the Court, in the case Saramaka v. Suriname established the standard of free, prior and informed consent when dealing with large-scale projects that may seriously affect the territory and the rights of peoples.

Sarayaku expresses its satisfaction with this victory achieved thanks to the efforts of its people and the support of people and organizations in solidarity and committed to the rights of indigenous peoples and states that we will be attentive to the sentence being carried out and that the territories of the Indigenous Peoples are respected in the face of harmful extractive activities such as oil exploitation.

Long live Sarayaku and the indigenous peoples of the continent.

Sarayaku, July 25, 2012.

Jose Gualinga
Sarayaku President

Contact: Jose Gualinga 083292734



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