AMERICA/BOLIVIA - Violence is unnecessary and contrary to the dignity of every man; even the Church supports the march of Tipnis

Friday, 6 July 2012

Cochabamba (Agenzia Fides) - "On many occasions the Catholic Church has condemned the use of violence, perceived as unnecessary and contrary to the dignity of every person and to their exercise of fundamental rights ... A
responsible dialogue instead presumes openness, listening and mutual respect, in order to achieve the desired solutions, at the service of human dignity and the common good of society ": are the words of a statement read by His Exc. Mgr. Oscar Aparicio, Auxiliary Bishop of La Paz, Secretary of the Episcopal Conference, during a press conference held yesterday to re-launch the appeal for dialogue. The Secretary General of the Bolivian Episcopal Conference expressed great concern over the repressive action exercised by the police against the participants of the IX Marcia of Tipnis (National Park and Indigenous Territory Isiboro Secure), including women and children, organized two days ago in defense of this indigenous area, to avoid the construction of a highway that would cross it.
Several institutions have expressed support to the local population: the COB (Central Workers of Bolivia), the Federation of Teachers of schools in La Paz, many sectors of society, the Catholic Church in the person of the Bishop of the Diocese of El Alto, Mgr. Jesus Juarez, who is the Vice President of Pastoral Social Caritas Bolivian, who has appealed for open dialogue and to find authentic agreements.
Yesterday the meeting of the Permanent Council of the Bolivian Episcopal Conference started in Cochabamba, during which this situation and other social problems in Bolivia were discussed. The situation became tense after the approval of the "consultation" on the construction of the highway in the area of Tipnis (see Fides 25/10/2011), although the government has specified that it is just a consultation and not the final approval for the construction of the work. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 06/07/2012)