Peru takes measures to control oil spill in Amazonian zone

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Peru's Ministry of Environment said Wednesday the government is taking steps to control the damage from an oil spill in neighboring Ecuador that has dumped 10,000 barrels of oil into the Napo River along their shared Amazonian border.

Minister Manuel Pulgar-Vidal said a contingency plan, including humanitarian aid, has been activated to assess the damage and apply the correct measures to ensure the safety of local communities and protect the region's biodiversity.

As part of the plan, a special brigade from Peru's War Navy ( MGP) has been flown to the Napo River basin, in the Torres Causana district of Maynas province, in northeastern Loreto department, official sources said.

The Minister's office of Environmental Evaluation and Monitoring will measure the environmental impact of the spill on the river basin, and the level of water pollution.

The government has also provided equipment and electric pumps, contention barriers, absorbent paper, portable water tanks and other devices to help clean up oil spills.

Last Friday, a 140-meter-long section of Ecuador's main oil pipeline, the Trans-Ecuadorian Pipeline System (Sote), was damaged by a landslide, spilling some 10,000 barrels of oil first into the Coca River, a tributary of the Napo, which flows across the border into Peru and reaches the Amazon River.

About 25 indigenous communities living along the Napo are in danger of having their water supply contaminated by the spill, so the Peruvian government is providing some humanitarian aid, including bottled water and food rations that are being transported by helicopters and hydroplanes. Endi

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