Argentine delegation demands release of all indigenous leaders arrested by police

Argentinian minister quits in protest over detention of indigenous leaders Jorge Faurie, an indigenous activist, was detained by police in the southern province of Santa Cruz, over the past month, during an investigation into…

Argentine delegation demands release of all indigenous leaders arrested by police

Argentinian minister quits in protest over detention of indigenous leaders

Jorge Faurie, an indigenous activist, was detained by police in the southern province of Santa Cruz, over the past month, during an investigation into allegations of links with the anti-government organization ALBA (the Latin American and Caribbean Anti-Bolshevik Alliance), he says. The arrests were made on 14 August, and on 22 August ALBA claimed that eight members of the group had been detained. The arrestees have subsequently been released.

The government of Argentina, under pressure from the Organisation of American States (OAS), has made a series of moves to impose control over its borders amid a wave of protests over its lack of response to the disappearance of 43 people in the country’s northwestern Santa Cruz province.

In the past few weeks, over 200 members of the indigenous Aucá (Chuncho) tribe have been arrested over the past month by the security forces, in what critics say is a widespread attempt to intimidate and persecute the indigenous Chachapoyas and other marginalized groups in Argentina.

On 24 August a delegation of representatives from the movement Indigenous, Social Justice and Solidarity Against Crime, or Izquierda Social, Justicia y Solidaridad por la Paz (Issdps), attended a meeting with Jorge Faurie, a Chachapoyas leader from Santa Cruz, who is currently being detained for 15 days on allegations that he links with ALBA.

Ahead of the meeting, the delegation had been given detailed information about the case of Aucá leader Cristián de la Fuente, who has been detained since September last year over allegations of having links with ALBA and being involved in the kidnapping in 2003 of José Antonio Güemes, a leader of the local indigenous movement, who had been investigating the disappearance of indigenous people in the province of Río Negro.

Aucá, one of the major groups of indigenous people in Argentina, whose territory includes the province of Santa Cruz and other provinces like La Pampa. At the meeting, the delegation warned the government not to arrest Aucá leaders Cristián de la Fuente and José Luis Vázquez, and demanded the release of all indigenous leaders who had been detained by the government, including those of the Aucá, Ticuna, Guaraní, Mapuche and other Indigenous communities.

The delegation met with local government institutions

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