Indigenous Guaraní evicted from their lands in Northern Argentina

Darren Hill mail at
Thu Sep 4 01:28:22 BST 2008

If you follow the link there is a form letter to send to the local 

There are also other similar actions documented.

On 28th July 2008, an infantry squad made up of fifty soldiers, with 
personal support from the soya entrepreneur Roberto Strisich, attacked 
the community with bulldozers [and lorries, arriving early in the 
morning in the fields belonging to the Guaraní community. They held in 
their hands an eviction order against ‘squatters’ which had been awarded 
by the criminal judge of the tribunal of San Pedro in favour of the soya 

The families belonging to the community Jasy Endy Guasu (Big Moon Light) 
have been living and working for many years in the area known as El 
Talar (public lands in the department 515), and in the Department San 
Martín (Ledesma) in the province of Jujuy in northern Argentina. Since 
2006, the soya entrepreneurs have been claiming ownership of the same 
land with adjudication contracts. The government has declared that “no 
documents can be found for the period between 1996 and 2000 when the 
same government granted those lands to the indigenous peoples; 
nonetheless the legal papers which the soya entrepreneur Strisich has 
obtained are valid”. It is important to notice that on 2nd May of 2006 a 
Tribunal in Jujuy passed a judgment that ordered the Provincial 
Government to “hand over the land in the departments 1-515 in Santa 
Bárbara” in its entirety to the original inhabitants. The Guaraní people 
in the province of Jujuy form 35 communities, of which only one has 
succeeded in obtaining a legal title to their land.

On 31st July, near the zone of El Talar, a Guaraní woman who was 
accompanying her sons was evicted. She had been collecting the animals 
that had been saved during the attack which the community had suffered. 
Once more she was attacked by Strisich and by two bullies who were in 
his service. Strisich, dressed in combat wear and carrying two pistols 
in his belt, pursued her with a knife. The community wanted to press 
charges at the local police station, but this was refused on the grounds 
that Strisich held the legal title to the land. Apart from the soya 
entrepreneur Strish, other entrepreneurs, such as Nestor Farfan, have 
been systematically threatening and pressurising members of the 
community, approaching people when they are by themselves. They have 
been responsible for death threats, for entering houses, stealing tools, 
burning merchandise, killing animals, prowling around armed at night as 
well as of other abuse to which the indigenous peoples have become 

After twenty days of mobilisation, of marches, hearings, assemblies, 
meetings with a diverse range of officials and a large number of 
actions, yet without return of the land by the authorities, the 
community of Jasy Endy Guazu decided to go back to the mountain from 
which they had been unjustly and violently evicted. On 19th August, the 
Guaraní people undertook a historic march, joined by all the surrounding 
communities, with vans, bicycles, on horse or on foot, to an encampment 
in the centre of the village. On the mountain, some 2,000 people had a 
Guaraní celebration at the foot of an ancient quebracho tree, in which 
they called on the union of the Guaraní people to obtain the rights that 
they had been denied and expressed their gratitude to the members of the 
social organisations which had supported this action.

A camp has been erected on the land where those who had been evicted are 
controlling and guarding the area, in the hope that the situation will 
All of this has happened under the valid National Law 26160 “Emergency 
of Indigenous Communities” which protects the indigenous peoples of 
Argentina against any eviction by officials, through criminal or any 
other measures from their land for a period of four years (which will 
expire in October 2010). This law also determines the need to demarcate 
the indigenous lands, so that they can be put back under the control of 
the indigenous peoples of the country and that those communities can 
obtain land titles.
Furthermore, the provincial government of Jujuy has to abide by the 
National Constitution. Article 75, section 15 of the constitution states 
that they must abide by international conventions such as paragraph 160 
of the International Labour Organisation and with the recent Declaration 
for Indigenous Peoples’ Rights. All of them recognise the indigenous 
peoples’ pre-existing rights to their territory and their right to be 
given proper land titles.

*End the abuse, end the repression, end the evictions, end the injustice 
– the indigenous peoples want to live in peace on their land!!!*

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