Narconews: The New Battle for Coca in Peru
Gomez and Friedsky: The New Battle for Coca in Peru – An Interview with Hugo Cabieses
September 30, 2005
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Peru is simmering with protest in these weeks over the national government's stance on the legal status of the coca plant. Yesterday, Narco News posted an interview that Luis Gómez and Jean Friedsky had done in Spanish with Peruvian academic and coca expert Hugo Cabieses. This morning, an English language transcript of his comments is available as well.
In their introduction to the interview, Gómez and Friedsky write:
"It has been months now since they returned to the streets, since they've been confronting the police and the army. Once again, thousands of Peruvian coca growers have returned to defend their right to live and, of course, to cultivate the sacred leaf. This time, with new allies, the National Federation of Agricultural Producers of the Coca Growing Basins of Peru (CONPACC in its Spanish initials) has gotten at least three regional governments in the country to pass local legislation in favor of the traditional consumption and trade, as well as industrialization, of coca. The debate that these laws have generated across Peru had been going on for months, until Tuesday afternoon the Constitutional Tribunal declared the legislation passed in the Cuzco and Huánuco regions unconstitutional.
"This time, your correspondents were preparing to offer you the story, which deserves to be told in all its details. On Tuesday, while the CONPACC was holding its fourth congress in Pampa de La Quinua (a legendary area for having been the site of the last great battle for independence in our América), and while the tribunal made its move, we interviewed Hugo Cabieses, one of the most important Peruvian 'cocalogists' and a friend of Narco News."
Read their full story, now with a link to the English transcript, in The Narco News Bulletin:
From somewhere in a country called América,
The Narco News Bulletin