Amnesty adds its voice to contamination claims
24 September 2017
In a report released this month, Amnesty International (AI) documents how communities suffer the consequences of high concentrations of toxic metals in their water supplies. The report states that the Peruvian authorities have failed in their duty to protect Indigenous communities by failing to provide adequate healthcare or to take steps to identify the causes of contamination.
The report, entitled ‘A Toxic State’, analyses the plight of indigenous communities in Cuninico (in Loreto region) and Espinar (Cuzco). It argues that the only sources of fresh water are contaminated by toxic metals harmful to human health.
According to Amnesty International’s Secretary General, “the fact that the Peruvian authorities choose to do very little in the face of evidence that hundreds of Indigenous people have been exposed to toxic metals is not only cruel, but a violation of their right to health”. The government declared a public health emergency earlier in the year, but no real steps appear to have been taken to provide adequate healthcare to the local communities affected.