Easter Island: Saving the Rapanui

Easter Island: Saving the Rapanui The Rapanui of Easter Island are facing extinction. They claim their colonial masters in Chile aren't doing enough to ensure their survival.
"Do you really want us to die? Do you really want to kill us?" questions Petero Edmunds, Mayor of Easter Island. A few hundred years ago, the people of Easter Island were facing certain death after cutting down every tree on their island to move their heavy statues. Now, they're under threat again because Chile has done little to develop the island's infrastructure. "We are facing a serious problem which is causing the island's collapse," states islander Edgard Hereveri. Currently, the island is governed from Chile and resources allocated on the same basis as for any small town in the country. But the Easter Islanders want to be granted autonomy. And they've taken their request all the way to the UN. As Edmunds explains: "If we continue to rely on an old bureaucratic system, we could be finished."

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