Bushmen protests hit USA and Switzerland

July 18, 2002

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Two key diamond markets targeted

The rolling campaign of protests at the illegal eviction of Bushmen from the Central Kalahari Game Reserve has spread to two of the most important countries for the diamond industry – the USA and Switzerland.

In New York, a group of sympathisers have held a vigil outside Botswana's UN High Commission. Their spokesman Tom Torma said, 'Having read so much about Botswana's programme of forced assimilation of the Bushmen, we wanted to express our outrage that this can still be happening in the 21st Century.'

Meanwhile, in Switzerland supporters staged a protest in the centre of the city of Lugano.

Survival International's Director, Stephen Corry, said today, 'Protests against the illegal evictions of the Bushmen, and the Botswana government's efforts to stamp out their culture, have now spread to eight countries around the world. More will inevitably follow unless the government allows the Bushmen to return to the land of their ancestors, as so many of them want.'

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