Chinchilla Acknowledges "Historical Debt" with Indian Tribes of Costa Rica

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    The Costa Rica News (TCRN)- Last Friday the president of Costa Rica, Laura Chinchilla, acknowledged the existence of a “historical debt” with Indian tribes of the country, during an interview with ADN radio station in Commemoration of the International Day of Indian Tribes.

    The president said that “the debt with the Indian Tribes is historical” and “dates back from the time before the Constitution of Costa Rica”. In addition, she stressed that the main obstacles Indian Tribes face are the “serious nutrition problems, access to opportunities, children’s problems, work sources, and drug trafficking.”

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    Last Friday Chinchilla visited the Indian communities of Talamanca, in Limón (the Caribbean), and turned over 42 houses, inspected a small clinic, and opened a center for emergency care and feeding. These works represent an investment of four million dollars.

    According to official data, during the Chinchilla government (2010-2014) 2,504 housing certificates were delivered to families in indigenous territories, which cost around 30 million dollars.

    There are almost 104,000 indigenous inhabitants in eight major areas: Bribís, Cabécares, Malekus, Chorotegas, Huetares, Teribes, Bruncas and Ngäbe, which present high levels of poverty and social problems.

    These communities are in urgent need of the approval of an autonomy bill that has been in queue in the Congress for 19 years. This bill seeks to provide indigenous peoples with greater autonomy to manage their lands, as well as the recognition of consuetudinary judgments as procedures compatible with the law of the country.

    It also aims to provide these communities with multicultural education, the establishment of indigenous patents for their natural medicine, and the creation of office buildings in the Foreign Ministry and the Ministry of Education, among other things. EFE

    The Costa Rican News (TCRN)

    San Jose, Costa Rica

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