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Organizations file a lawsuit against Ecuadorean Gov’t

Quito, May 10 (Prensa Latina) Members of indigenous communities, social and political organizations filed a lawsuit against the Ecuadorean Government to the Constitutional Court for failing to comply with and minimizing environmental demands.

At a press conference in front of the judicial institution, participants rejected the lately decree issued by President Daniel Noboa on the creation of a committee for the progressive withdrawal of oil activities in block 43-ITT, in the Amazonian Yasuni National Park.

According to the document, the Committee for the Execution of Popular Will (CEVP) Yasuni-ITT will coordinate and establish the mechanisms, guidelines and actions that will be executed ‘to fulfil the popular will regarding Block 43’.

Pedro Bermeo, representative of the Yasunidos Movement, warned that decree 257 to create a commission to mull over the withdrawal from the oil field excludes the organizations that carried out the popular consultation.

Bermeo recalled that on August 20, 2023, 58.9% of Ecuadoreans voted in favor of keeping the oil underground in the area, which is considered the largest protected area in that nation.

The organization further denounced that the executive decree seeks to cover up what is happening in the Olon commune, in the province of Santa Elena, where a company belonging to Lavinia Valbonesi, wife of President Noboa, is trying to conduct a real estate project in a protected area.

In that regard, the spokesperson for the Olon commune, Simon Velasco, warned that this locality has been the victim of repression in recent months, and affirmed that they will stand steadfast in defense of the territory, and that they will take legal action.

The legality of the deeds to this property must be reviewed, Velasco pointed out, while he clarified that as it is an ancestral community, they can claim collective rights over the project that is to be built there.

Meanwhile, the president of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (CONAIE), Leonidas Iza, agreed that decree 257, which establishes the creation of a committee to analyze the withdrawal of oil exploitation in Yasuni, is a smokescreen to cover up the Olon case.