On September 22nd and 23rd, the United Nations held its first annual International Conference on Indigenous Villages. Indigenous representatives from around the world gathered in New York City to discuss indigenous rights in order to bring equality to a group of people that have been oppressed and discriminated against since colonization. The indigenous population of the world totals 370 million people, which constitutes 5% of the total world population and they represent about one third of people living in poverty.1
Peru is home to one of the most geographically and biologically diverse landscapes in South America. Coastal beaches, desert, mountains, and rainforest can all be found within this country’s borders. Due to this rich diversity, however, the different regions of Peru are slightly isolated from one another. These divisions have lead to various problems in the past, and continue to be an issue today, particularly for the environment.
Diverse studies observe that social conflicts and protests arise in areas where natural resource extraction occurs (Arellano-Yanguas 2011a, b). Recently, several intense localized protests have occurred at mining sites in almost all the democratic countries of Latin America (except in Paraguay); for instance, these social demonstrations have arisen in Peru (Conga), Chile (Mina Invierno), Argentina (Fanatina), Panama (Cerro Colorado), Uruguay (Aratirí), Costa Rica (Crucitas de Crutis), and Ecuador (Fruta del Norte).
Those concerned with democratic accountability and the separation of powers may ask whether the Peruvian Constitutional Tribunal effectively checks other governmental actors and what determines such judicial assertiveness or its antithesis, judicial deference. In a recent article by Lydia Tiede and Aldo F.
On 5 February 2015, some 200 employees of the mining company Yanacocha invaded the property of the Peruvian land rights defender Ms. Maxima de Chaupe. She has lived in an area known as Tragadero Grande, Cajamarca for over 20 years. In 2011 Yanacocha Mining Company, a Peruvian-American-World Bank transnational enterprise, attempted to buy the 49-year-old woman’s land and when she refused to sell it, a campaign of intimidation, violence, and judicial courts ensued.
The funding of sub-national government as part of strategies to decentralise administrative structures is usually considered as a condition for success. Without a degree of fiscal autonomy, local government is unable to exercise latitude in the choice of spending priorities that comes with the delegation of authority and responsibility. However, as the recent experience of Peru shows, fiscal decentralisation is far from problem-free, especially when democratic, participative and accountable layers of government are largely missing.
China’s recent mini economic collapse this past summer caused mayhem not only within its borders but thousands of miles away in many Latin American countries. Ever since the early 2000s China has been one of the leading foreign investors across Latin America in countries such as Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Argentina, Brazil, and Venezuela.
Climate change has a serious impact on the world’s fresh water supplies, especially in many developing countries that are already struggling with scarce water resources and increasing water conflicts and where water security and water equity are burning issues on the agenda of national governments and local authorities. As discussed recently in the Latin American Research Review , the problem is particularly urgent in mountain regions where fresh water supply mainly comes from glacial melt water.