Buenos Aires, 1 August 2018
To Whom it may concern
Fighting for justice represents an enormous effort for the people, especially the indigenous, poor and underdeveloped countries, subjected to the great pressures exerted on them by transnationals, states and the political and economic powers.
But there are invaluable examples, which pave the way and smooth over the obstacles generated by global structures to guarantee the impunity of multinational companies when they violate the human rights of people.
This is the case of the “Union of those affected by Texaco”, an organization that brings together more than 30,000 indigenous people and peasants from the northern Amazon region of Ecuador, which for more than 25 years have carried out the most important legal battle that a community has faced in against a transnational company, Chevron, one of the four most powerful oil companies in the world.
In this battle they have managed to recognize the guilt of Chevron in the contamination of more than 480 thousand hectares of Amazonian forest, but also the responsibility on the serious socio-economic, cultural, ecological and health impacts facing the populations that settle in the area that was exploited by the corporation.
All the judicial bodies that have studied the merits of the case have given reason to those affected, despite their few resources but with a strength worthy of recognition, has managed to sustain this search for justice in several countries of the world for a quarter of a century. During this time they have managed to systematize, like no other experience in the world, the structure that allows transnationals to violate human rights. These learnings are now what we are using to fight for international mechanisms that prevent these structures from continuing to apply.
But now, they face a serious problem. A Court of Appeals of Canada, has ruled that those affected must pay more than 350 thousand Canadian dollars, as court costs, which would stop the possibility of continuing to litigate in that jurisdiction and therefore would lose the great progress made by those affected to collect the sentence to be used in the repair of the affected areas.
For this reason, I am writing to you to ask for your support for these fighters, who in their process are unraveling all the fabric of impunity to ensure that the other battles of other people can access justice. Help us stop corporate impunity.
Receive a greeting of Peace and Good
Adolfo Pérez Esquivel President of SERPAJ Nobel Peace Prize
The Service, Peace and Justice Foundation (Fundación Servicio Paz y Justicia) a consulting institution to ECOSOC and UNESCO, has been recognized by the United Nations with the Messengers of Peace Award and UNESCO´s Education and Peace award. Piedras 730, Ciudad de Buenos Aires (1070), Buenos Aires, Argentina, Telephone/Fax: 54 11 43615745, mail: email@example.com, WWW.serpaj.org.ar