A new heavy crude pipeline in Ecuador, will cross the country from east towest, carrying oil from the Yasun National Park in Amazonia and affectingindigenous peoples and ecosystems throughout the country. A large number of local organizations have publicly expressed their opposition to the project.
The government's reaction --which is usually very slow to react to the Ecuadorian peoples' demands-- has been extremely swift to protect this project against its opponents. President Gustavo Noboa himself, publicly threatened Accion Ecologica (Friends of the Earth-Ecuador) during a press conference held on May 17 in the city of Guayaquil. He accused this organization of being hypocritical and said: "In the past we knew who they were; we knew they were the radical left; now they call themselves greens, ecologists..."
He shouted that we would declare war on the ecologists, that he would fight them "trench by trench" and that he would not allow "four clowns to fuck the country", in reference to the organizations and local communities opposing the pipeline.
Given the great importance that the government is giving to the implementation of this project, Acci__n Ecol__gica fears that their lives might be endangered and particularly that of Yvonne Ramos, whom the President specifically mentioned.
Acci__n Ecol__gica is one of the organizations that lodged an appeal demanding the suspension of the contract between the government and the OCP consortium, integrated by AGIP (Italy), Alberta Energy (Canada), Kerr Mc Gee and Occidental (USA), Repsol/YPF (Spain), Perez Companc and Techint (Argentina). The appeal was also signed by the main organizations and social movements of Ecuador, including CEDHU, APDH, CONAIE, FENOCIN, Seguro Social Campesino, among others.
Acci__n Ecol__gica is requesting everyone concerned about this to send letters to President Noboa, asking him to respect the opinion and work of those who protect nature and life in the country, making him responsible for any attack on the physical security of Acci__n Ecol__gica's members. They add that "More than ever we need to join forces and achieve international support to show that there are hundreds of organizations throughout the world that support ecologists in Ecuador and who oppose the OCP pipeline due to the social and environmental impacts it will entail". Click here for sample letter (in Spanish).