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Sunday, August 17, 2008

Venezuelan Natives getting back their lands

The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela is beginning the process of delimitation of indigenous lands in order to legalize native ownership of them. This process is unprecedented in Latin America, where the few shy steps given in this direction have never been implemented properly.

This is the final step in the process that began in 2001 with the approval of the Law of Demarcation and Guarantee of the Habitat and Lands of the Indigenous Peoples and Communities and followed up by the Law of Indigenous Peoples and Communities of 2005.

The comission in charge has already assigned 34 poperty titles to three different ethnicities: Pumé-Jivi, Kariña and Warao, benefitting 8,932 individuals and attributing 905,582.86 hectareas. The comission has recieved so far 67 requests of demarcation but only eight of them with all the bureaucratic requirements. They complain that a major problem that is delaying the process is the lack of qualified personnel in many provinces.

Source: Rebelión: Venezuela reconoce más de 900.000 hectáreas a los pueblos indígenas.

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