The History of Guna Yala and it's People


Colombia’s Act of June 4, 1870 created the Tulenega Shire, which included the present territory of the Guna Yala and various other communities of the District of Wargandi, such as Mordi, Sogubdi Asnadi and well as some of the communities of the District of Madungandi, including Tiuarsicuá, and Guna communities of Colombia, such as Tanela and Arquía. The land area of the Tulenega Shire runs from the province of Columbus to the Gulf of Uraba, Colombia. The head of government of the region was generally a commissioner appointed by the central government.

After the separation of Panama from Colombia in 1903, the Shire was divided into two parts: the majority remained in the new nation of Panama, while a small portion was in Colombia.

The banana concessions, incursions of outsiders into the Guna village in search of gold, rubber, sea turtles and abuse from colonial police abuse caused great discontent among the natives and caused the Guna Revolution in February 25 1925. It was directed by Nele Kantule of the town of Ustupu and Olokintipipilele (Simral Colman) of Ailigandí. The Guna, armed, attacked the police on the islands and Ukupseni Tupile, accusing them of suppressing the Guna customs and abusing in several communities. In this revolution, Guna was proclaimed the ephemeral Republic of Tule, distancing itself from the central government of Panama for a few days. The subsequent peace treaty established the commitment of the Government of Panama to protect the Guna customs. The Gunas, in turn, accepted formal school system development in the islands. The negotiations that ended the armed conflict took the first step in establishing the autonomous status of the Guna people and recover the culture that it had been missing for years.

Currently, according to the ruling of the Supreme Court, from March 23, 2001, the Districts have a political-administrative organization distinct and separate from that of the Districts and Villages. The Counties are governed according to their own specific institutions, and by resolution of Third Chamber of the Supreme Court, the day of December 6, 2000, one of the institutions is the consent of indigenous peoples in projects that seek to develop in their territories.

Tourism activities in the life of Guna been growing since the 60s. At that time much of the tourism enterprises were controlled by foreigners Americans.

The total population of Guna Yala is about 50,000.

The languages used by the tribes include theirnative Kuna & Spanish.

The Gunya Yala region is an indigenous province in northeast Panama (Official Gazette of Panama.

Most Guna people follow a traditonal Kuna religion, while others are Catholic.

The traditional dress of the Guna women includes the Mola.

Seafood, coconuts, plantains, and some wild game form the core of the Guna diet.

The region's major exports include coconuts and lobster, as well as the sale of molas.

The region also relies on eco-tourism, as it has a lot of natural beauty.