PERU

Peru is about to revolutionise its land laws. A new agriculture law introduced, on July 17 by the government eliminates all limits on land-holding throughout the nation. it sweeps away the last

THE VICUNA, South America's graceful camelid coveted for its soft, silky hair, is falling prey to well-organised gangs of international rustlers "working for brokers within Latin America who then

Behind an unmarked door in a Lima suburb, Javier Wong is planning a revolution in more than just stir-fry cooking. In fact the very future of food - and farming - is being re-imagined here in a city where nobody dined out 20 years ago, where there is no national tradition of gastronomy, and where there is considerable malnutrition. But in the capital of Peru, a city not so long ago wracked by Shining Path terrorist violence, the top chefs - men and women like Gaston Acurio, Javier Wong and Pedro Miguel Schiaffino - believe gastronomy can achieve social justice.

Protesters in the Amazon basin have forced Peru's state energy company to shut its crude oil pipeline, a company official said on Monday as the government tries to end weeks of demonstrations over natural resources.

Protesters angry over oil and natural gas developments in Peru's resource-rich Amazon vowed on Friday to defy the government and step up demonstrations that have disrupted operations at energy companies.

A private-sector source told Reuters that as many as 41 vessels serving energy companies are stuck along jungle rivers, unable to move because of the protests.

Protesters upset over oil and natural gas developments in the resource-rich Amazon are threatening to choke energy supplies in northern Peru, the country's environmental minister said on Tuesday.

Peru's government is encouraging investment in hopes of turning the country into a net oil exporter from a net importer.

Peru's government, which is encouraging energy companies to develop the resource-rich Amazon, is considering creating five new reserves to protect jungle tribes that are living in voluntary isolation.

Advocacy groups have been pressuring Peru to balance indigenous and environmental rights demands with those of foreign investors as the country tries to boost energy output.

Over 83% of rural families living in the Amazonian jungle of Peru have no access to electrical energy because of the difficulty and high cost of extending the electricity grid to the region. The sustainable use of biomass to generate energy could make a significant contribution in this regard, in particular in the form of liquid biofuels such as biodiesel and vegetable oils.

Indigenous rights groups praised Peru's petroleum agency on Thursday for excluding areas where isolated tribes live from an auction of oil and gas concessions. Rights groups say the decision is a turnaround for Perupetro, which previously had indicated it might open up the protected areas for bidding. "This decision acknowledges a certain standard ... that there will be no exploration or extraction of natural resources on lands inhabited by un-contacted tribes," said David Hill, a researcher with Survival International, an advocacy group.

More than 2,000 members of a religious sect recently marched up to the district of San Jeronimo, near the city of Cuzco in the southeastern Peru, to protest an official mining exploration request,

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