The Waorani people of Pastaza are an indigenous tribe from the Ecuadorian Amazon. In recent years, they have been fighting a legal battle against a large oil company that nobody thought they could win.
The Amazon tribe have lived in the Rainforest for many generations. The Amazon Rainforest is well known for being the largest and most dense area of woodland in the world. Spanning across nine countries, the Amazon is home to millions of different animals and plant species.
The Ecuadorian government was planning to drill for oil over an area of seven million acres of rainforest. But thanks to the Waorani people, an area that would have been affected is now safe.
After accepting a Waorani bid for court protection to stop an oil bidding process, the court has halted the potential auctioning off of 16 oil blocks that cover over 7 million acres of indigenous territory. What’s more, they have protected half a million more acres of their territory from potential drilling.
A spokesperson for the Waorani of Pastaza, the Amazon tribe in question, Oswando Nenquimo, released a statement.
“Today we have protected our forest from oil drilling; we have protected our water from contamination; we have protected our children from sickness. This is a legal precedent for indigenous rights,
“But the fight is far from over. The government will appeal because they still want the oil beneath our land. Indigenous Nations across the Amazon and the world must band together to protect our homes.”
This ruling is important for the safety of the rainforest and the rights of native peoples who live there.
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