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Amazon Triple Frontera

Life along liquid borders

In the Amazon, the “Triple Frontera” is the “triple frontier” where the Brazilian, Peruvian and Colombian borders meet. This border is intangible: the imaginary lines of the map are lost in the jungle and waters of the Amazon, a favorite route for drug traffickers and unscrupulous smugglers. But the Triple Frontera is also the land of the Ticuna, the Yagua and the Cocama, indigenous peoples who live in stilt houses in symbiosis with the aquatic environment: “We depend on water,” explains Alex Ruffino, an activist from San Pedro de los Lagos, “and here everything revolves around the rains and the rivers, which are the only routes for communication and trade.” The alternating rainy and dry seasons allow these communities to organize 

fishing, travel and harvests of medicinal plants, whose secret rituals – despite increasing evangelization – are jealously preserved by the women of the villages. Here, in the heart of the Amazon, only the echoes of the devastating deforestation that is destroying the rainforest a thousand miles away can be heard. But the ecosystem is under threat, and at COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh in November 2022, Brazil’s newly elected President Lula said he wants to reverse the outgoing president’s environmental policies. The goal? The definitive protection of the Amazon rainforest, and its rich cultural heritage.


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