The Return: a family reconnects with the Amazon as Covid threatens their village – video As billions of people isolated around the world in 2020, villagers from Sarayaku , a Kichwa community in the Ecuadorian Amazon, headed deeper into the forest to escape the coronavirus pandemic. The journey, documented in a new short film called The Return, reaffirmed the bond the community has had with the forest for generations, protecting ancestors from missionaries, militias and emerging diseases such as measles and smallpox, as well as sustaining life. Eriberto with some of the crew and villagers in the Ecuadorian Amazon. Photograph: Selvas Producciones Directed by the indigenous film-maker Eriberto Gualinga and co-produced by his niece and environmental defender Nina Gualinga, both from Sarayaku, alongside British film-maker Marc Silver, the Guardian documentary had its premiere at the Sheffield DocFest in June. The Kichwa community has gained international acclaim for its environmental activism, successfully defending its ancestral lands in the Bobonaza river basin against an oil company looking to drill , and winning a case against the Ecuadorian government at the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) in 2012 for not respecting the right to life, safety and land. The Guardian spoke […]


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