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The Gonawindúa Tayrona Organization - OGT The Black Line

ogt is an indigenous organization gathering the different indigenous communities living in a shared territory in the 'sierra nevada de santa marta', colombia. It represents the kogui, arahuaco, wiwa, malayo, and kankuamo communities.

the 'sierra nevada de santa marta' is an isolated mountain range in northern Colombia. Reaching an altitude of 5,700 m (18,700 ft) just 42 km (26 mi) from the Caribbean coast, the Sierra Nevada is one of the world's highest coastal ranges.

A major part of this territory has been inhabited by this indigenous communities for centuries, and so it is a network of interconnected sacred spaces that holds the balance of everything and is the origin of teh world. this ancestral territory is delimited by what is know as 'the back line'.

'the black line' is then the border limiting this espiritual territory and their connections within, enabling the links between the territory, the culture, nature, and the world in general.
Indigenous communities in this sacred land, have the responsibility of living and protecting this territory, from the sea to mountain top, including every animal, river, and tree in it.
This territory has been affected by illegal mining and logging, and official mining projects around the border plus wild-fires due to climate change. Furthermore, illegal armed groups have presence in the territory, threatening its inhabitants and planting illegal crops. The consequence of this is a critical level of deforestation, biodiversity loss, rivers drying, and snow disappearing at the top of the mountain, not to mention the invaluable cultural and espiritual loss.
ogt represents indigenous communities from the 'sierra nevada de santa marta' before external actors and governmental entities. They fight for their interests and rights.

The organized work of indigenous communities through the ogt has stopped several projects that would have affected their indigenous guard territory.

During meeting between ogt and the ministry of culture, it was exposed the damaged in the territory caused by large-scale interventions with heavy machinery near 'the black line'.

reviews were made at the river mouth of the 'RIO ANCHO' RIVER. IRREGULARITIES WERE FOUND IN THE AUTHORIZATION FOR MACHINERY WORK, and it was determined this work had affected the vegetation and some crustacean species in the ecosystem. The work was demanded to stop until environmental permits are in place.

tHE OGT ALSO CLAIMED THOSE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DAMAGE OF THE RIVER, ALSO HAD A CONSTRUCTION PLAN FOR A HOTEL NEAR THE TERRITORY. WITH THE SUPPORT OF OTHER ORGANIZATIONS AND PUBLIC FIGURES, THIS ISSUE HAS GAINED VISIBILITY.
National authorities have followed the case and assure the hotel would be near 'the black line' which is a protected area where priority is given to biodiversity and the free access of indigenous communities living in the territory is guaranteed, and thus it doesn´t have the environmental authorization to be built.

Credits:

1. Claude Dopagne; Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta; March 11, 2019; (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0). 2. Alejandro Bayer Tamayo; Palma de cera de la Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta (Ceroxylon ceriferum); October 28, 2014; (CC BY-SA 2.0). 3. Sailing Nomad; IMG_8964.JPG; February 8, 2007; (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0). 4. Peter Chovanec; Dva špice na chalupách symbolizujú dva posvätné vrcholy pohoria Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. Oba majú výšku 5775 m; April 25, 2017; (CC BY 2.0). 5. Sailing Nomad; IMG_8893.JPG; February 7, 2007; (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0). 6. Sailing Nomad; IMG_9007.JPG; February 8, 2007; (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0). 7. Jorge Láscar; Tayrona indian resident at Pueblito - Tayrona Walk - Calabazo to Pueblito; September 18, 2009; (CC BY 2.0).