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Peru: Exiled indigenous leader detained at airport: Further information

, Index number: AMR 46/008/2010

On 26 May 2010, Segundo Alberto Pizango Chota was detained at Lima airport, Peru, returning from exile in Nicaragua. He may be brought before a judge later today (27 May). Unfounded charges against him must be dropped and in the absence of any wrong doing he should be released.

FU on UA: 123/10 Index: AMR 46/008/2010 Peru Date: 27 May 2010
URGENT ACTION
EXILED INDIGENOUS LEADER DETAINED AT AIRPORT
On 26 May, Segundo Alberto Pizango Chota was detained at Lima airport, Peru, returning from
exile in Nicaragua. He may be brought before a judge later today (27 May). Unfounded charges
against him must be dropped and in the absence of any wrong doing he should be released.
Alberto Pizango, leader of AIDESEP (Asociación Interétnica de Desarrollo de la Selva Peruana) has been in exile in
Nicaragua since mid-June 2009. He landed at Lima airport on a flight from Nicaragua yesterday afternoon (26 May)
at 3:30 pm. He was accompanied by several people including Daysi Zapata, acting president of AIDESEP. Upon his
arrival he was immediately detained by police and is currently in detention. He will expected to be brought before a
judge later today.
Alberto Pizango faces charges for "rebellion, sedition and conspiracy against the state and the constitutional order",
as well as with "apology of crimes against public order". Amnesty International believes that the charges against
Alberto Pizango appear to be politically motivated and must be dropped immediately. In the absence of any wrong
doing Alberto Pizango should be released.
PLEASE WRITE IMMEDIATELY in Spanish or your own language:
Urging the authorities to ensure that Alberto Pizango is not ill-treated during his detention;
Insisting that the unsubstantiated charges against him be dropped, and in the absence of any wrong doing he
should be released;
Reminding the authorities that Indigenous Peoples in Peru have faced decades of ill-treatment and
discrimination at the hands of the State and that they have a right to chose their own elected representatives and
claim their rights as laid out in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 8 JULY 2010 TO:
President
Sr. Alan García Perez
Presidente de la República del Perú
Palacio de Gobierno
Plaza Mayor
Lima 1, PERÚ
Fax: : + 511 311 3940
Email: via website:
http://www.presidencia.gob.pe/cartas_pr
esidente.asp
Salutation: Sr. Presidente
Attorney General
Dra. Gladys Margot Echaíz Ramos
Fiscal de la Nación / Ministerio Público
Av. Abancay cdra. 5 s/n
Lima 1, PERÚ
Fax: +511 426 2800
Salutation: Sra. Fiscal
And copies to:
Indigenous organization
AIDESEP
Av. San Eugenio 981 Urb. Santa
Catalina
La Victoria / Lima 13
PERÚ
Fax: +511 472 4605
Email: aidesep@aidesep.net.pe
Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country. Please check with your section office if sending appeals after the above
date. This is the first update of UA 123/10. Further information: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/AMR46/007/2010/en
Date: 27 May 2010
URGENT ACTION
EXILED INDIGENOUS LEADER DETAINED AT AIRPORT
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
Alberto Pizango, leader of AIDESEP (Asociación Interétnica de Desarrollo de la Selva Peruana) was in exile in Nicaragua from
mid-June 2009. He was granted asylum by the Nicaraguan authorities after he sought refuge in the Nicaraguan embassy in
Peru's capital, Lima, after the Peruvian authorities accused him of being responsible for violence which led to the deaths of 33
people in Amazonas department, northern Peru, on 5 June 2009. One year on from those events, Alberto Pizango is returning to
Peru and to his position as leader of AIDESEP.
Alberto Pizango was charged with "rebellion, sedition and conspiracy against the state and the constitutional order", as well as
with "apology of crimes against public order". However, at the time of the violence on 5 June 2009, Alberto Pizango was in Lima,
hundreds of kilometres away. The evidence for the charges appears to rest solely on a press conference given by Alberto Pizango
on 15 May 2009 where he called for an "Indigenous insurgence" against the government. At the press conference he apparently
clarified that the call for insurgency was a call to the government to annul a series of laws which were being passed without the
free, prior and informed consent of Indigenous people, as a first step to initiating a dialogue as equals. He publicly retracted this
call the following day in the presence of the Human Rights Ombudsperson and this retraction was posted on AIDESEP’s website
as well as being reported in the press.
On 5 June 2009, 33 people were killed and at least 200 injured after police officers dispersed a road blockade organised by
Awajún and Wampís Indigenous people in a stretch of the Fernando Belaúnde Terry highway, known as the Curva del Diablo
(Devil’s Bend) leading to Bagua, in Bagua province and Bagua Grande, in Utcubamba province. Among the 33 people who were
killed, 23 were police officers and 10 were civilians, including five Indigenous people. Eleven of the police officers were killed
while they were held hostage by Indigenous protestors at the Petroperú Pumping Station No. 6. 80km from Bagua near the town
of Imacita, Bagua province; 12 were killed during the police operation at the road blockade and the whereabouts of one police
officer remains unknown.
Amnesty International considers that these tragic events were the predictable and preventable result of the continued disregard
by the Peruvian authorities of their duty to respect, promote and protect the rights of Indigenous Peoples in the Amazon region.
International human rights standards, including the International Labour Organization’s Convention 169 and the UN Declaration
on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which protect Indigenous Peoples against losing their land and resources in the name of
development have been adopted precisely to avoid loss of life and livelihood and to ensure that communities enjoy all their
human rights, indispensable for their dignity, without discrimination.
Indigenous Peoples have the right to be consulted in good faith before the adoption and implementation of legislative or
administrative measures that may affect them. However, in 2008, the authorities passed a series of decree laws over the use of
land and resources in regions of the country rich in natural resources including the Amazon region and did not consult them.
When Indigenous peoples protested against these decree laws demanding their human rights, not only were they not listened to,
but on 5 June 2009 they suffered ill-treatment and torture, they were arbitrarily detained, and some were killed.
FU on UA: 123/10 Index: AMR 46/008/2010 Issue Date: 27 May 2010

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