More than 100 organizations from around the world have signed onto an open letter to show their support for the Shuar Arutam People (PSHA) in the Ecuadorian Amazon as they confront a possible COVID-19 outbreak in their territories.
The initiative responds to the PSHA’s urgent demands of the Ecuadorian government following the death of two people whose close relatives traveled to the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada’s (PDAC) mining fair in Toronto, Canada in March, 2020. In March, the PSHA denounced the company for bringing seven Shuar community members to Toronto in supposed representation of the communities, despite not being duly elected representatives of the Shuar Arutam People’s Assembly. The PSHA condemned the delegation as part of efforts to undermine their categorical rejection of mining in their territory. Upon the delegation’s return to Ecuador, two of their immediate family members died with COVID-19-like symptoms. At least 8 other members of Shuar communities are also showing symptoms.
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