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- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - FYI: News Items of Interest, 2/20/2006 (1 item) Compiled by Elise Boxer Additional information about sources available at the end of the message. - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -  "Yaqui In Mexico Suffer Effects Of Toxic Pesticides Used In Agricultural Fields." Brenda Norrell, Indian Country Today, February 20, 2006. Copyright 2006 Indian Country Today. All Rights Reserved. ["Obregon, Mexico - Yaqui from Sonora, Mexico, are seeing an increase in birth defects, while young people are dying from cancer after working without protective clothing with pesticides in agricultural fields near their villages. Francisco Villegas Paredes, Yaqui from Vicam village, said doctors have confirmed that the birth defects and cancers are the result of Yaquis working in fields where these dangerous pesticides and chemicals - which have been banned in other countries - are being used by farmers who lease Yaqui lands primarily for wheat and corn crops. Describing the deformities of a 9-year-old child who sleeps face-down because of a bone growth on his spine, Paredes said, 'It would make you so sad to see these Yaqui children.' Pointing out that most of these pesticides and chemical fertilizers are banned in the United States, Canada and Europe, Paredes said the government of Mexico is allowing dangerous pesticides and chemicals to be imported and used in Mexico without warnings. 'Mexico knows these toxic chemicals are banned, but allows other countries to come in and violate the laws,' Paredes told Indian Country Today, speaking through a translator. 'In Mexico, there are no strict regulations or environmental laws to protect the people. The chemicals imported into Mexico should have warning signs on them. The farmers should inform the workers that these chemicals are dangerous and they should supply the workers with gloves, masks and protective clothing.' Maria de los Angeles Verdia Matus, from Potom village, said four Yaqui youths from her village died during the past five years from working with the pesticides without wearing protective clothing or masks. The youths worked in the fields at home spraying pesticides on weekends and vacations from their studies at the universities in Obregon and Hermosillo. When doctors confirmed that the brain tumors and cancers of these youths were caused from the chemicals used in the fields, Yaqui communities began take action. Struggling to find strength and support, Paredes and Matus attended the 2006 International Indian Treaty Council Conference at the Independent Traditional Seminole Nation in Okeechobee, Fla., the second week of February. Matus said, 'All of this time, we thought we were alone and we felt we couldn't continue to struggle alone. But I saw that so many Indian people have the same problems and some people came with problems worse than ours.' Worldwide, she said indigenous are struggling for their land rights. 'We thought we were the only ones fighting for our territory, but we found out that indigenous people are fighting for their territory all over the world.' Around the world, indigenous are being exposed to dangerous pesticides which contaminate the air and waters. Those pesticides migrate and penetrate the food chain, causing cancer, birth defects and other health problems, according to the International Indian Treaty Council."] For additional information please see: http://www.indiancountry.com - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - FYI: News Items of Interest is a daily resource compiled by the H-AMINDIAN staff. It features a sampling of news stories concerning Native issues in Canada, the United States and Mexico. In order to comply with Academic Fair Use and copyright laws, only a summary of the news articles is offered here. We will not reproduce articles in whole. Only stories from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) offer a direct link to the article in question (the link follows immediately after the summary). However, online links to all of our sources are available at our website: http://www.asu.edu/clas/history/h-amindian/list.html. Your college, university, or public library may provide access to online data bases and services (such as Lexis-Nexis, ProQuest, or Dialog) with full-text versions of these and other stories. H-AMINDIAN is part of the H-NET family and is housed in the Department of History, Arizona State University.