Organizations Denounce Law That Will Amount to Biopiracy for Native Mexican Communities
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April 14, 2017

Organizations denounce that the new law will adversely affect Indigenous people in Mexico (EFE)

Activists and scholars in Mexico have denounced that the proposal of the Biodiversity Law that violates the biocultural heritage in the territories of Indigenous people.

They have signed a letter asking that senators "suspend the biodiversity law initiative and open a process of forums and free, informed consultation in the different languages of the Indigenous people."

The law is promoted by Senator Ninfa Salinas from the Green Party of Mexico, the daughter of Ricardo Salinas Pliego, the owner of the large network TV Azteca.

Greenpeace denounced the fact that the Senate's Environment and Natural Resources Commission intends to approve an initiative that would open the doors to the privatization of genetic resources and traditional knowledge of Mexico without consulting Indigenous communities, where much of the country's biological diversity is found.

"Mexico as a megadiverse and pluricultural country deserves modern legislation that protects biodiversity, prevents its genetic erosion, and puts human rights of Indigenous communities and the common good before the private rights of companies," said Miguel Rivas, head of Oceans campaigns at Greenpeace.

According to the organization, the proposal that originally was presented in October 2016 has omitted the protection of species and would open the door to pharmaceutical, cosmetological and agro-industrial companies to patent ancestral knowledge and other products of biodiversity for commercial purposes.

"That is why senators must take the issue seriously and rethink the legal framework for genetic use," it stated.

Read the rest at teleSUR

Related: Mexico Urged to Prioritize Bilingual Education for Indigenous Communities (teleSUR)

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