A fierce row has broken out over a controversial plan to drive a road through pristine Amazon rainforest, imperilling the future of some of the world's last uncontacted tribes.
The 125-mile (200km) road would pass through the Alto Purús national park in Peru, connecting a remote area to the outside world but opening up the most biologically and culturally important area of the upper Amazon to logging, mining and drug trafficking. Opponents of the plan fear it will threaten the existence of uncontacted tribes such as the Mashco-Piro. The first detailed photographs of members of the tribe made headlines around the world earlier this year after they were spotted on a riverbank.
The majority indigenous population of the region appears to be largely united in its opposition to the road, which would run parallel to the Brazilian border, connecting the towns of Puerto Esperanza and Iñapari. Conservationists warn it would cause irreparable harm to the environment and the area's people.
But the road has the support of many mixed-race settlers - or mestizos - who make up roughly one fifth of the region's population. With the Alto Purús currently accessible only by plane, they believe that the road would improve their quality of life, bringing lower prices for... Source/Origin >> Read More