Ecuador will appeal the ruling that on Friday a provincial court in the Amazon region issued and demanded the end of the bidding for an oil field because it violated the mechanism of prior consultation and informed the Waorani indigenous nationality.
In a statement, the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources not Renewed informed on Saturday that it will appeal the judicial ruling of the court of the province of Pastaza, in the northeastern region of the country, which responded to a protection action filed by the communities belonging to the Waorani nationality local.
The State Portfolio “informs that the decision will be appealed, considering that although documents, videos and demonstrated compliance with all standards, these elements were not taken into account.”
It adds that the Public Ministry delivered to the judicial authorities “all the evidence that evidenced compliance with the consultation under international parameters”, despite which the court ruled against.
The hydrocarbon authority argued that due to this reason it will continue litigating “according to the corresponding resources, sure that the consultation was carried out respecting the rights of the peoples and nationalities”.
The Pastaza court issued a landmark ruling on Friday for the indigenous Waorani ethnic group, and acknowledged that the State had not conducted a full-fledged consultation, as required by law.
The indigenous ethnic group had asked the court for an action to protect against oil exploitation in the so-called block 22, in tender by the Ministry of Energy and Hydrocarbons.
The ethnic group argued that a consultation conducted years ago in that region was “flawed”, “crafty”, and that it did not guarantee the principle of information and freedom of the consultation because it was a “deception to communities to justify the oil tender in the territory”.
To back up their action, the defense of the Amazonian nationality presented extensive documentation and testimonies of those affected in which they claimed that authorities had contacted them but to ask them if they wanted to have better infrastructure or priority services such as health or education and subsequently They marched without further explanation.
The judge of Pastaza thus recognized the violation of the right to prior consultation and, consequently, the Ministry must make such a consultation before tendering the field.
The Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of the Ecuadorian Amazon (Confeniae) rejected on Saturday through Twitter what they consider an “arrogant statement” by the Ministry of Natural Resources regarding the failure of the provincial court.
“The Amazonian communities are ready to fight against any incitement on the part of public institutions that attempt against our territory,” says the trill of the Confeniae.
The legal battle of the Waoranis, which has become a symbol of the struggle for the rights of indigenous peoples against the extractive policies of governments and multinationals, has been backed by the American actor and environmentalist Leonardo DiCaprio, who has congratulated for the victory in social networks.
The main Ecuadorian oil fields are in the Amazon, precisely where a large number of indigenous tribes are concentrated.
According to the Waorani Resistance organization, in 2011 the oil blocks in the Ecuadorian Amazon covered 76 percent of the total surface area of seven indigenous nationalities and affected the mobility of isolated groups such as the Tagaeri and Taromenane. (I)