US State Department condemns Botswana’s ‘narrow interpretation’ of Bushman ruling

March 28, 2008

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The United States Department of State has this month produced a report on human rights in Botswana. The report criticises the Botswana government’s ‘narrow interpretation’ of the High Court ruling on the Bushmen, which has prevented most of the Bushmen who were forcibly removed from their land from returning.

The report states that the ‘government’s continued narrow interpretation of a December 2006 High Court ruling resulted in the majority of San [Bushmen] originally relocated from the Central Kalahari Game Reserve (CKGR) being prohibited from returning to or hunting in the CKGR.’

The report also points out that most of the Bushmen who are allowed to return have not done so, because of the lack of water in the reserve. It recalls that in 2005 police had shot rubber bullets at Bushmen trying to enter the reserve to bring food and water to their relatives there.

Read the full US State Department report

For more information contact Miriam Ross on (+44) (0)20 7687 8734 or email [email protected]