Repudiate the brutal repression against the TIPNIS indigenous march!

September 29, 2011

By LOR-CI, Bolivia
Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The COB, the PSTMB and the industrial unions must go from words to deeds: Nationwide strike, mobilized now!

On Sunday afternoon, the TIPNIS indigenous march was savagely attacked by hundreds of cops. The brutal repression left as a balance, one dead baby, tens of indigenous people who disappeared in the jungle, people wounded and arrested. In these moments, hundreds of women and men, arrested and loaded into police buses, do not know where they are being taken.

The police operation, carried out after almost 40 days of indigenous marches, is aimed at preventing the mobilization from arriving at the seat of government and from their converging with big urban groups of workers and poor people, that were already expressing their solidarity with the demands, such as the demand for respecting the right of self-determination that these peoples posses, the demand not to build the highway to serve the oil, timber, gold-mining transnational corporations, and those interested in regional integration based on the bi-oceanic highway, that would cause the destruction of indigenous territory.

With the recent repression, the government of Evo Morales has, once and for all, ended its demagogy about the rights of indigenous peoples and is revealing its entire character, at the service of the transnationals and the large estates in eastern Bolivia. Savage repression, covered up with the accusation that there was an anti-government, subversive movement, financed by the US and the pro-Sánchez de Lozada right wing, has no foundation. The highway through the TIPNIS is a project of the IIRSA [South American infrastructure integration initiative], a program worked out by the neo-liberal governments in the year 2000, whose main financial backers are the Inter-American Development Bank (BID), the Andean Development Corporation (CAF) and the World Bank. The government of Evo Morales has already declared 30% of the TIPNIS indigenous territory as an oil region, a declaration that will serve the transnationals of the sector, that turned into partners of the state, after the 2006 "fraudulent" nationalization.

The COB union bureaucracy has called a national strike for Wednesday, September 28, in support of the indigenous mobilization; however, up to now, they have not published the official call nor disclosed a gathering place for the march. They are doing that, since this bureaucracy, headed by Pedro Montes and his friends, who have refused to call a COB congress for the last 5 years, has subordinated the COB to the politics of Morales and García Linera, and in that effort they are trying to avoid going from declarations to deeds. In every factory, enterprise and place of work and study, we must demand the organization and preparation of the strike and of every action in support of the indigenous mobilization in defense of their rights to self-determination in their territories. We must demand the immediate criminal prosecution of Sacha LLorenti and all the policemen involved in the savage repression.

Long live the struggle of the indigenous peoples of the TIPNIS! For the defense of their right to national self-determination! The oil, gold-mining and timber transnationals must get out of TIPNIS and Bolivia! No subdividing of the TIPNIS! Expropriation of the large estates, to be distributed among landless settlers and peasants!