PERU'S untouched indigenous tribes facing growing threats................

JUST like the Sentinelese tribal people who recently killed an American who ventured into their Indian Ocean island, Amerindians from the  Amazon rainforest reject all contact with outside world.

But their way of life, and indeed their lives, are under threat from from drug trafficking, illegal deforestation and mineral exploitation.

Peru, half of which is covered by the Amazon rainforest, is one of the few countries left in the world where uncontacted  tribes continue to live in absolute autonomy, away from modern society.

The Peruvian Amazon is home to 16 indigenous communities numbering some 4,500  people, according to the culture ministry, that live in voluntary isolation.

Amongst them are the Mashcopiro, Cacataibos, Iscoahuas, Matsigenkas, Mastanahuas, Marunahuas, Nantis and Yoras tribes.

Three more communities, around 2,500 people people, are in a situation of  ''initial contact.'' They all live in reserves in three regions in the east of Peru : Ucayali, Madre de Dios and Cuse.

Contact between these groups and outsiders is rare, but sometimes violent, in much the same way as  27-year-old American John Allen Chau's encounter with the Sentinlese in the Andaman Islands.

Only around 130 members of that tribe remain on North Sentinel Island and all outsiders are barred from even approaching within three miles [five kilometers] of their land.

In the Amazon, this refusal to mix with the outside world is in large part a reaction to previous contact that has seen the Indians suffer attacks and outbreak of diseases brought by colonizers that to which they have no immunity, something that has decimated their communities.

The honor and serving of this research continues.


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