The Original Nations of Bolivia, in opposition to Petro: “Colombia commits a brutal act of colonialism in Galen San Jos” | EUROtoday

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Sixth day of April, the month wherein the Government of Colombia plans to ship its Navy ship ARC Caribe to develop surveys and extractions on the stays of the galen San Jos, sunk by English warships in 1708, close to the coast of Bar, in northern Colombia. In the final crossing of it, the San Jos transported to Spain an immense cargo: American jewellery, Chinese porcelain from the Qing dynasty and tons of labored silver and cash that Colombia claims as its personal after the invention of the galen's stays in 2015 by treasure hunters employed by that nation.

Since then, Spain and a part of Colombian civil society have been capable of paralyze these extractive initiatives in order that nobody exploits the ship's treasures and that its worth as an archaeological website and its dignity as a cemetery is revered. He San Jos, it’s argued, was a state ship and enjoys sovereign immunity. Its official proprietor just isn’t an extinct non-public firm, however the Kingdom of Spain, the identical State that has authorized continuity since 1708 and represents the identical nation. Its authorized shielding would additionally enable a whole bunch of historic ship websites from the Carrera de Indias to be defended.

Gustavo Petro, president of Colombia because the summer time of 2022, introduced final yr his intention to withdraw from diplomatic negotiations and worldwide authorized disputes and to start prospecting. In Spain, probably the most seen initiative to cease this coverage has moved to civil society. Jos Mara Lancho, one of many attorneys who accompanied the Government in his lawsuit in opposition to the Odyssey treasure hunters for the stays of the frigate Our Lady of Mercedes, was employed by three First Nations of Bolivia, Killakas, Carangas and Chichas. Together they demand from Colombia and Spain their proper to co-decide the way forward for the San Jos. Why? Because a part of the treasure of the Spanish ship comes from its territory and was extracted from the mines by the inhabitants they characterize right nowin pressured and unequal circumstances to these of the opposite topics of the then Kingdom of Castile.

We have the proper to be heard and to take part in choices that instantly have an effect on part of our tradition and historical past. Defend that the stays of the galen stay solely cultural It is a part of our resistance as peoples. We are not looking for them to be bought, nor do we wish them to serve to facilitate the plundering of different historic ships of the Race of the Indies, the representatives of the Nations clarify to EL MUNDO. Tata Reinaldo Quispe (Nacin Caranga), Tata Hilarin Meja (Nacin Chicha) and Tata Bernardino Colque (Nacin Killaka).

Scientific surveys

Scientific surveys on the wreck of the 'San José'.

And it’s so for a lot of causes, the truth that a lot of its content material was extracted from our soil with a lot ache is why the stays of these ships are additionally a part of our ancestral territory. They comprise roots of our reminiscence, the testimony of generations of our ancestors. that forcibly extracted, reworked and formed a lot of the content material of these websites. For us it has a religious and in addition sacred aspect in the identical approach {that a} cemetery needs to be sacred for Spaniards or Colombians. Those galleons are. Colombia will commit a critical plundera brutal act of colonialism if the galen intervenes with out our consent.

An rationalization: the First Nations of Bolivia have a acknowledged historic id (by Spain because the sixteenth century) and collective rights over their cultural heritage by advantage of quite a few worldwide devices that confer upon them. worldwide authorized character. Colombia additionally mentions 102 indigenous communities in its structure.

What does your proposal for the San Jos? Like the remainder of the sunken galleons of the Carrera de Indias, [debe ser] thought-about widespread and shared heritage. Of the native peoples, of Spain and the American republics. [Esperamos] Consequently, worldwide regulation is utilized, not simply that of one of many events. We want to actively take part within the course of by way of our conventional authorities and that the findings are additionally exhibited in our land for the enjoyment of all. Maybe with a museum in Potos. We additionally ask that the information and science generated by these stays will profit the well-being of our individuals.

Juan Revollo, consultant of the Killakasm Nation philologist and Quechua linguist explains that, though there may be already an entry to the college for younger individuals from the indigenous nations, there may be nonetheless a necessity for a vital cooperative effort to degree the academic alternatives accessible to different teams.

One of the keys to the case of the Indigenous Peoples can also be included within the response of the Indigenous Peoples. San Jos. The Republic of Colombia has by no means signed the principle worldwide agreements on Underwater Heritage, so the Petro Government considers that it’s official to make its choices solely in keeping with its regulation. However, as lawyer Lancho refers, “even without ratifying specific treaties, Colombia, as a member of the UN, has the general duty to abide by the principles of customary international law. The immunity of sunken warships is firmly established in the international custom of the sea and obliges Colombia“.

Furthermore, “Colombia and Spain have signed the International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of the United Nations as well as the International Covenants and UN Declaration on Indigenous Peoples that allow my clients to be part of this controversy that affects them“.

“What we fear most is that our presence and knowledge will be ignored, once again denying us recognition as peoples with their own identity,” they add from Bolivia. “Let them take decisions unilaterally without our will and without taking into account the effect they will have on the rest of the heritage in the waters of Colombia and the rest of the American countries. If President Petro decides to corner international law, the right of the family of nations to make the galleon only of Colombia, he knows the fate of the rest of the galleons sunk in the waters of Colombia and the rest of America, He knows that they will be prey for treasure-hunting industries..

Once again, the declaration of the First Nations finds a hidden key: since 2015, the Government of Colombia has signed successive contracts with treasure hunting companies to share the loot of the San Jos. In February, the Petro Executive organized a scientific congress in Cartagena de Indias that ended with a call and a commitment, more symbolic than formal, not to economically exploit the wreck. The extractions, it was said then, would have a scientific purpose. Lancho is skeptical: “What occurs with the opposite sunken deposits in Colombia? The Colombian regulation of 2013 that encourages treasure looking will apply to them. “What will happen to the rest of the deposits in waters around the world if sovereign immunity is not operational?”

The worry expressed by the Indigenous Nations is that this waiver is the exception to a deadly common rule: that it’ll function a precedent the place the waiver of sovereign immunity will enable the treasure looking trade to proceed on deposits in all of the oceans. The Nations ask UNESCO for one thing that the Kingdom of Spain has not but requested for: that the wrecks of sunken ships be included by the World Heritage Committee within the Inventory of Cultural Assets in Danger.