|Indigenous leader Alberto Pizango was arrested on his return to Peru |
Alberto Pizango has now been released. Pizango issued a press statement saying why he had decided to return to Peru and that Peru’s indigenous people are not only fighting for their rights, but ‘for the future of humanity and planet earth.’
The president of Peru’s national organization for indigenous people in the Amazon, AIDESEP, has been arrested on his return to Peru.
Alberto Pizango has spent the last 11 months in Nicaragua, having sought political asylum after being charged with ‘sedition, conspiracy and rebellion’ in Peru. AIDESEP sees the charges against Pizango as part of a wider campaign by the government to undermine Peru’s indigenous movement.
Pizango arrived yesterday in Peru’s capital city, Lima, together with AIDESEP’s vice-president Daysi Zapata Fasabi and Q’orianka Kilcher, an actress of indigenous Peruvian descent who played the role of Pocahontas in the film ‘The New World’, starring Christian Bale and Colin Farrell. Pizango was arrested immediately.
The charges against Pizango were made after hundreds of peaceful indigenous protesters were attacked by Peruvian police on 5 June last year, an incident that led to 33 people dying and at least 200 injured and sparked protests against Peru’s government around the world.
Survival’s director, Stephen Corry, said today, ‘We urge the Peruvian government to drop all charges against Alberto Pizango and enable him to return to his position as AIDESEP’s president.’