AMERICA/BRAZIL - Another threat for the indigenous Guarani and Kaiowá

Tuesday, 19 January 2016 indigenous   violence   armed groups  

Taquara (Agenzia Fides) - At dawn, the indigenous Guarani and Kaiowá took possession of a part of their traditional territory in the area known as "Taquara indigenous Land" on January 15. The area, on which there is a farm, is known by the natives as Lechucha and is part of the Taquara territory, near the town of Jutes, in Mato Grosso do Sul. The Indigenous say they were threatened by armed men on pick-ups, the so-called "pistoleiros".
The incident occurred two days after the anniversary of the assassination of Marcos Veron, who died on January 13, 2003. Marcos was a historic leader of Taquara, and began to lead the Guarani and Kaiowá people in 1997, after years of waiting for the Government's response to requests for the identification and demarcation of their land. The note sent to Fides by CIMI (Indigenous Missionary Council), informs that at present, the territory is pending ratification of the area by the federal government. Studies of identification of traditional lands began in 1999, and in 2010 the Ministry of Justice issued a declaratory order, recognizing the Guarani and Kaiowá people as owners of their territory. The approximately 600 indigenous people have lived so far in a small part of their traditional territory, occupying only 300 of the 9,700 hectares of Taquara. In this small space, Guarani and Kaiowá have suffered constant abuse, threats and violations of all kinds, even the use of pesticides in the plantations of sugar cane near and deforestation caused by farmers nearby. Fides has reported the harsh story of the Guarani and Kaiowá people several times (see Fides 23/09/2010, 09/08/2013) and the complaints of CIMI (see Fides 14/06/2012, 07/04/2014). (CE) (Agenzia Fides 19/01/2016)