Bolivia-nej til regnskovsvej

Forfatter billede

Præsident Evo Morales har skiftet mening efter landsomfattende protester mod vejen, som ville gå gennem jomfruelige regnskovsreservater og angiveligt åbne nye områder for coca-baroner og tømmer-eksport til Kina.

Bolivian President Evo Morales says he is rescinding (omstøder) the contract of a Brazilian firm to build a controversial road through the Amazon rainforest, BBC online writes Wednedsay.

He accused the firm, OAS, of not complying with the terms of the deal by repeatedly ignoring instructions and failing to meet various contractual obligations.

Mr Morales had already suspended the most contentious section which was to pass through an indigenous rainforest reserve known as Tipnis.

Now he is seeking to annul the contract to build the other two sections of the road between Villa Tunari and San Ignacio de Moxos.

Mr Morales did not say if the road project would continue or if OAS would be compensated.

Work on the central section of the road – which was to pass through the Isiboro-Secure reserve (Tipnis) – was suspended last year after a protest march by indigenous tribes.

They said it would destroy their rainforest homeland, opening it up to land grabs by coca farmers.

Mr Morales initially defended the highway saying it was vital for national development, but backed down as the protest gathered nationwide support.

The road project was being funded by Brazil to link the Brazilian Amazon to ports on the Pacific coast of Peru and Chile (thereby creating a gateway for export to China).