Siona Survival

Siona Survival

We want peace, not oil.

We want peace, not oil.

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Sign the letter telling the British oil company Amerisurand the Colombian Government to respect the Siona's rightto keep their territory safe and oil-free

Sign the letter telling the British oil company Amerisur and the Colombian Government to respect the Siona's right to keep their territory safe and oil-free

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Make your voice heard!

a message directly to Amerisur
and to Colombia's president Duque
to respect the Siona's rights!

“We, the Siona people of Buenavista, have always lived here along the shores of the Putumayo river. Over the last few decades the violence of the armed conflict in Colombia has invaded our territory and our lives. The threats we face prompted the highest court in Colombia to declare that we Siona are at risk of physical and cultural extinction.

Yet with our very existence at risk, the Colombian government has sold extraction rights over the only rainforest territory we have left to the British oil company Amerisur. In 2014, when Amerisur first arrived, we told them no. Today, as Amerisur continues its attempt to push into our territory, we say no again.”

“We, the Siona people of Buenavista, have always lived here along the shores of the Putumayo river. Over the last few decades the violence of the armed conflict in Colombia has invaded our territory and our lives. The threats we face prompted the highest court in Colombia to declare that we Siona are at risk of physical and cultural extinction.

Yet with our very existence at risk, the Colombian government has sold extraction rights over the only rainforest territory we have left to the British oil company Amerisur. In 2014, when Amerisur first arrived, we told them no. Today, as Amerisur continues its attempt to push into our territory, we say no again.

Our curacas, the most respected of our elders, drink yagé, also called ayahuasca, to communicate with the spirits living in the forest, to call forth the animals and fish, to care for our territory and our families. Through yagé, our curacas summon a vision for the health, safety and longevity of our people. That vision doesn’t include oils wells contaminating our rivers nor military interventions into our land to shield Amerisur’s infrastructure and workers.

Even though the Colombian Peace Accords were signed in 2016 the violence along the Putumayo River continues. Amerisur’s oil operations nearby are already inflaming that violence, causing division amongst our neighbors, and putting the lives of our leaders at grave risk. Instead of protecting us, the Colombian government has abandoned us.

We are ready for peace. We must be able to hunt in our territory without fear, drink yagé at night without the unsettling sounds of oil operations rumbling nearby, and bathe in our rivers with certainty that they are clean. These activities are tied to our continued existence as Siona and tied to the continued protection of our forest.

Our demands are clear:

  1. That Amerisur permanently renounce its oil interests in the territories of the Siona of Buenavista.
  2. That the Colombian government guarantee the Siona’s right to keep our territory free of oil operations and immediately comply with the decisions of the two highest courts in the land, its own Constitutional Court and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, both of which require integral and urgent action to guarantee our physical and cultural survival as Siona.

Si’a re’ohuë bain huanare surupa canitoñë – To all the good people of the world, many thanks and goodbye.”

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