President expels fundamentalist New Tribes Mission

October 27, 2005

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President Chavez of Venezuela has expelled the fundamentalist American missionary group New Tribes Mission from the country.

The New Tribes Mission has a controversial history. It has long been accused of ignoring tribal peoples' rights in its desire to evangelize at all costs. In Paraguay in the 1970s and 1980s, the organisation assisted in the forcible contact of nomadic Ayoreo Indians, whose unsuccessful attempts to remain in the forest led to several deaths. Others died soon after being brought out of the forest.