Botswana: Wikileaks reveals US condemnation of eviction of Kalahari Bushmen
The US Ambassador to Botswana strongly condemned the government’s forced eviction of the Kalahari Bushmen, according to secret US embassy cables released yesterday.
Ambassador Joseph Huggins told his bosses in Washington in 2005 that the Bushmen had been ‘dumped in economically absolutely unviable situations without forethought, and without follow-up support. The lack of imagination displayed… is breathtaking.’ He concluded by saying, ‘The special tragedy of New Xade’s dependent population [i.e. the Bushmen in the relocation camp] is that it could have been avoided.’ Botswana’s government forcibly evicted the Bushmen from their ancestral lands inside the Central Kalahari Game Reserve in 2002. The Bushmen were dumped in government relocation camps outside the reserve where HIV/Aids, alcoholism, and other problems previously unknown to the Bushmen are rife.
Tags: Land rights