(Tribunal Quito 2014 / Paris 2016)

Presented by Elizabeth Bravo, PhD, Ecuador

Elizabeth Bravo, PhD

Elizabeth Bravo is Coordinator of the Network for a GE Free Latin America, an Ecology Action Member and Professor at the Salesian University.  Ms Bravo was part of the Expert Group on Risk Assessment of Living Modified Organisms of the Cartagena Protocol Negotiating the Cartagena Protocol on transboundary movement of Living Modified Organisms , the Convention on Biological Diversity

View the judge’s ruling by Blanca Chancoso to accept the case on threats of GMOs and Transgenics

Case Study and threats of GMOs and Transgenics

Informations held in the Tribunal of Quito:

How do GMOs violate the rights of nature ?

Ecuador ‘s Constitution (Art. 71 ) states that nature has the right to:

– That their existence is fully respected – To maintain and regenerate its vital cycles, structure, functions – Evolutionary Processes

We will analyze the nature assaults that occur at different times :

– Transgenesis and genetic manipulation

– The field release of transgenic seeds – Consumption


The essence of genetic manipulation is to alter the structure of the DNA molecule . Using molecular biology tools , is inserted into the genome of a plant ( for example corn ) , genes from bacteria and highly infectious virus , and that through evolution , have designed mechanisms to be inserted into the genome of other organisms. These organisms are the result of two billion years of evolution.

The problem of transgenesis is producing organisms in the laboratory , violating the laws of biology that prevent foreign genes from infecting the genome of an organism. This influences both the evolutionary cycles of GMOs , as all organisms that could contaminate genetically , either through horizontal gene transfer , or through gene flow between transgenic and non-transgenic plants , or their biological relatives .

Through these new genes ( which may come from other living organisms , but are also produced synthetically in the laboratory ) , the DNA sequence ( that is a molecule containing inheritable information ) is altered. Here we have the first violation and a right of nature . At the molecular level, is altering the structure of nature.

By altering the structure of DNA , also alter their functions. Thus, almost 99 % of GM crops are grown commercially have been manipulated to produce a protein that gives resistance to herbicides , or synthesizing a toxin with insecticidal properties , and thus “control ” populations of some pests agricultural . That is, more of the function they have to produce starches or crop oils, now produce transgenic proteins.

Presenter: Vandana Shiva(Navdanya) 

Marie-Monique Robin (Journalist), Ronnie Cummins (Organic Consumers Association (OCA)

José Bové (Green European Deputee), Andre Leu (IFOAM)

View videos of Agro-food Industry/GMOs case presentation and judge’s statement.

Dr. Vandana Shiva, together with witnesses and experts she called, presented a case for why the actions of the Agro-food Industry were violations of Natures Rights on a massive scale. Corporations such as Monsanto were defining and owning the processes of life through their patents of genetically modified seeds, violating the fundamental right of Mother Earth to her vital life cycles and increasing the financial dependence of cotton seed farmers in India on their BT1 and BT2 seeds leading to the suicide of over 300,000 farmers. Evidence was also given on how Monsanto’s “Roundup” pesticide had become one of the greatest health scandals on the planet and how the agro-food business as a whole system was contributing far in excess of the 15% of global GHG emissions usually cited.

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