A Danwatch investigation

“The mining companies only see water. But water is life for us”

1. December 2019
Sophia Boddenberg
Photo: Pablo Rojas Madariaga

67-year old Clementino López is one of around 20,000 indigenous Likan Antai living in the Atacama Desert. He was born in Bolivia close to the Chilean border and came to Chile at the age of five. “We are a nation without borders”, he says – amongst other things, in reference to the fact that the Likan Antai were divided by present-day national borders and are now living in both Chile, Bolivia and Argentina.

In this interview, Clementino López talks about what water means to the people that inhabit the driest desert in the world. And he talks about his ”greatest sorrow” – that there is less and less water in the Atacama.

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