Mongabay Environmental News

Indigenous Colombians mount a spiritual defense of the Amazon

MOCOA, Colombia — The Union of Traditional Yage Medics of the Colombian Amazon (UMIYAC) brings together five ethnic groups ­— the Cofán, Inga, Siona, Coreguaje, and Kamëntsá — who practice spiritual ceremonies for individual and community healing based on ayahuasca, or yagé. But that’s not all that these communities have in common. All five of these Indigenous groups are also classified by Colombia’s Constitutional Court as being at “risk of physical and cultural extermination.”
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