USA :Tension on land of Brazilian chief Raoni after incursion by armed men

Two armed men invaded the village of chief Raoni Metuktire in the Brazilian Amazon on Monday night and opened fire in the community, leaving no injuries, the Raoni Institute denounced on Tuesday.

“The individuals fired 29 shots and invaded the Capoto / Jarina indigenous land, continuing to the Piaraçu village, putting the lives of the 327 Kayapós who live there at risk,” the statement released by the Institute detailed.

The Piaraçu village, neighboring the Xingú territory, is located in the state of Mato Grosso (central-western Brazil).

According to the complaint, the men “destroyed the health barrier built by the indigenous people themselves to maintain social isolation in the pandemic” of coronavirus.

The indigenous leaders of the village called the police, made the complaint official and announced that they will take precautionary measures “so as not to be surprised by a new attack.”

Chief Raoni, who is around 90 years old, was hospitalized in July for gastric ulcers, an intestinal infection and anemia. He was discharged a month ago when he returned to his village.

Characterized by his colorful feather headdresses and the large disc inserted into his lower lip, Raoni traveled the world for the past three decades to raise awareness of the threat of destruction of the Amazon.

In January, he received dozens of indigenous leaders in Piaraçu to discuss strategies to protect their lands and the Amazon, in the face of the far-right president Jair Bolsonaro’s offensive in favor of mining and energy exploitation of the rainforest.

The indigenous people denounce the advance of illegal activities on their lands, which generate environmental damage and put traditional communities at risk.

The Pastoral Land Commission (CPT) counted nine indigenous people killed in rural conflicts in 2019, the highest number in at least a decade.

In parallel, the indigenous people also face the spread of the new coronavirus that to date has left more than 27,000 indigenous people infected and 717 dead, most of them in the Amazon.

The supreme court of Brazil ratified in early August a precautionary measure that obliges the federal government to adopt measures to contain the spread of the new coronavirus among indigenous populations.

On the eve of the trial, the famous photographer Sebastiao Salgado urged the eleven magistrates of the Federal Supreme Court (STF) to take action on the matter.

“The invasions [de tierras indígenas] they are, as you know better than I, completely illegal. Those communities are protected by the Constitution and you are the last resort, “said Salgado.

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