Argentina's Supreme Court halted the granting of land to a Mapuche community in the province of Río Negro when implicitly validating an injunction requested by a landowner who had filed for a judiciary remedy against a decision by the National Institute of Indigenous Affairs (Inai) whereby the Lof Che Buenuleo community in Bariloche was awarded 481 hectares, it was reported Friday.
Bariloche landowner Emilio Friedrich had filed the case against an Inai regulation recognizing the current, traditional and public occupation of the Lof Buenuleo Community, belonging to the Mapuche People. Friedrich claimed to own a 92-hectare property known as Pampa de Buenuleo where an eviction order had already been issued.
A lower Court had turned down Friedrich's claim on June 18, 2021, thus holding for valid the arguments put forward by the Inai, but an appellate court ruled in favor of Friedrich on the grounds that: ”The duty of the National State -derived from our National Constitution and other rules that must be adjusted to it- to ensure the indigenous communities the full enjoyment, possession, and ownership of the lands they traditionally and historically occupied, cannot but be fulfilled through the implementation of administrative procedures (...) that, in order to carry out such a purpose, protect the right of defense not only of the aboriginal collectives but also of the individuals whose legitimate interests may be directly affected by the measures adopted.
The right to claim ownership of aboriginal territories is not absolute, as are all the rights enshrined in our Supreme Law (...) a circumstance that justifies, even more, the intervention of the subjects whose rights may be effectively compromised,” they added in the ruling issued on December 21, 2021.
After that, the Inai, a department within the National Secretariat of Human Rights filed a new appeal before the Supreme Court, which dismissed the case entirely just for having been submitted past the legal deadline.
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