More About U'wa
The U'wa are a peaceful culture of more than 6,200 people who live in the remote Andes of northeastern Colombia, along the border with Venezuela. Both the U'wa and the cloud forest they inhabit are among the last of their kind in the world. However, the U'wa way of life is now jeopardized by oil, gas, and mining concessions. More
How the Goldman Prize Bolstered the U'wa Struggle for Territorial RightsFebruary 17, 2017
If UNESCO designated people as World Heritage sites, Berito Kuwaru'wa would be a leading candidate. On one hand, he personifies the beautiful and poetic U'wa view of the world, deeply connected to the original laws of nature. On the other, he is a unique and visionary human being, with an innate charisma through which he has bridged cultures and inspired global support for the U'wa struggle.
The U'wa consider themselves the guardians of their sacred ancestral homeland. In accordance with their natural laws, for centuries they have successfully defended their territory high in the Andean cloud forests.
At Amazon Watch we are extremely proud of the relationship of solidarity we have built with the U’wa, who continue to amaze and inspire us.
For the majority of Colombians, and for those who have worked on human rights in Colombia, the conflict that has killed hundreds of thousands and displaced millions can't end soon enough.
Peace is more than the silencing of guns, and that the peace accord will not address all sources of violence in the conflict. To that end, we share with you this guest blog from Bogota-based activists working with our partners of the U'wa Nation in Colombia, recounting the U'wa's recent struggle to recover their ancestral territory from oil drilling.
The Sioux fight is representative of other fights around the globe. If Standing Rock wins this, we will win other fights for social and environmental justice. We all need to work together to build this global justice movement around the globe.
"Whatever fine print comes out of the World Conservation Congress, Amazonian indigenous women will continue to protect our Living Forest." Paty Gualinga, the powerful spokeswoman from Ecuador's Kichwa indigenous community of Sarayaku, inspired the attendees at one of the world's largest gatherings of environmental organizations and governments.
With the recent centennial of the National Park Service, we've seen much publicity in favor of national parks within the United States. The idea of natural protected areas is viewed as a general good among popular opinion. Who could be opposed to the conservation of nature?
Historic Gathering of Indigenous Leaders Champion "No Go" Areas for Sacred Sites at IUCN World Conservation CongressAugust 24, 2016
A delegation of 25 powerful indigenous leaders from around the world will attend the quadrennial IUCN World Conservation Congress (WCC) in Honolulu, Hawai'i, from September 1 to 10. The WCC is the world's largest recurring conservation event attended by government, corporate, nonprofit and academic leaders, among its many influencers.
For decades, the U'wa indigenous people of Colombia have been an inspiration to others around the world, including everyone at Amazon Watch. With vision, persistence and courage, they have repeatedly demanded their rights and overcome the daunting forces arrayed against them.