An army of Amazonian Indigenous women plans to parade a list of demands to the door of Ecuador's President Lenin Moreno on March 22 to fight exploitation by the oil and mining industries.
After marching for a week through the capital city, Quito, Women of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of the Ecuadorean Amazon (Confeniae) were admitted into the Governmental Palace on Friday to meet with Presidential Secretary Sebastian Roldan, per the state policy to communicate decisions with Indigenous communities.
The Indigenous representatives' 20-objective mandate outlining the needs of communities in the Amazonian region as well as their opinion on the continual destruction of forest land.
"We are the protectors of the jungle," Amazonian representative Nina Gualinga said during her meeting with Roldan, urging the government to accelerate its investigations into crimes and threats against social leaders in the region.
Gualinga explained there have been multiple allegations of sexual assaults near the various oil fields in the area.
The group of Indigenous women began their crusade Monday, "camping" in front of Carondelet, the presidential palace, where they swore they would stay until Moreno agreed to meet them and receive their mandate. On Tuesday Ecuador's police unsuccessfully attempted to remove them from the public square, but no incidents were reported.
In the past, Confeniae has strongly criticized the government, denouncing the decision to permit oil companies to begin drilling in the central-southern zones. It says Amazonian communities such as Shuar, Achuar, Sapara, Kichwa, Shiwiar, Waorani and Andoas would be put at risk and negatively affected.
In prevalent mining sectors where the Nankints and the Tundayme live, many inhabitants have turned to authorities to assist them as they are subjected to eviction and displacement.