AMERICA/BRAZIL - Justice for the murder of Moïse Kabagambe: "barbarism becomes normal when it involves the poor"

Saturday, 5 February 2022 human rights   rascism   emigration  

Rio de Janeiro (Agenzia Fides) - Justice for the murder of Moïse Kabagambe, identifying the perpetrators of this "unacceptable and brutal act with which they cowardly took the life of this 24-year-old", is what the National Conference demands of Bishops of Brazil (CNBB), together with the Red Clamor Brazil and the Solidarity Network for Migrants and Refugees (RedeMiR) and 119 other ecclesial realities. The young Congolese was murdered last week in Barra da Tijuca, west of Rio de Janeiro, beaten to death for asking to be paid for days of work done at a kiosk on one of the city's most famous beaches. According to the "Note for justice" published, sent to Fides, "barbarism becomes normal when it involves the poor, in vulnerable situations, from the peripheries. A large part of the migrant and refugee population is part of this group. Unfortunately, we see that the racism, xenophobia and hatred of the poor are gaining ground in Brazilian society".
The 122 signatories of the document highlight that "guaranteeing the basic rights of migrants and refugees is a constant challenge in Brazil", reiterating that "it will never be too much to reaffirm the importance of defending human rights in a country that unfortunately continues to mark its history rooted in violence".
Therefore, they express their solidarity with Moïse's family and the Congolese community in Brazil. Monsignor Zanoni Demetino Castro, Archbishop of Feira de Santana and head of the Afro-Brazilian Pastoral Care of the Episcopal Conference (CNBB), has written in an article that the murder of the Congolese Moïse "cannot be seen isolated from the context in which thousands of young black people live and have been killed in recent times. Of the 34,918 violent deaths of young people reported at the end of 2021, 80% were young blacks. The scenario is bleak for our families and black communities".
The Archbishop then cites the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which states that no one can take the life of another, and reiterates that "the mission of the Church is to evangelize by following in the footsteps and attitudes of Jesus, accepting his teachings and announcing the Gospel", therefore "violence is contrary to the authenticity of our faith, to the authenticity of our humanity". And finally he concludes: "we want to express our outrage at the genocide of our black youth. Black lives count. We are 56% of the total Brazilian population and that is why we ask the competent civil and legal authorities to act in favor of life, in favor of black lives. We demand that the perpetrators of these deaths be punished in accordance with the law". (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 5/2/2022)