Indigenous Peoples in Argentina fight against lithium exploitation

Photo: Susi Maresca
Photo: Susi Maresca

In Jujuy, in northwest Argentina, indigenous communities and workers from different sectors are fighting against a provincial constitutional reform that was approved in June 2023. The reform enables lithium extraction in indigenous territories and criminalizes social protest, among other rights violations. Lithium is considered a “strategic” resource, especially for companies and countries in the North, as it is crucial for the electrification of cars and other products.

After weeks of the police violently repressing protestors, the communities announced that they will walk more than 1,600 kilometers to Buenos Aires, the capital of the country, to demand the repeal of this reform and the recognition of communal land ownership. Jujuy is part of what is known as the “lithium triangle,” which covers part of Argentina, Chile and Bolivia.

To learn more about this struggle, we recommend reading the Jujuy section of the news portal “Agencia Tierra Viva” and this article from Agencia Pelota de Trapo, in which journalist and writer Raúl Zibechi analyzes what is happening in Argentina in the context of advancing extractivism in Latin America.