Former Brazilian radical militants who were tortured during the Brazilian military regime (1964/1985) supported the creation of a Truth Commission to unveil human rights violations, during a ceremony at the Ministry of Justice in Brazilian capital Brasília.
Maria Alice Albuquerque Saboya, former political prisoner called on the new generations to fight for the establishment of a Truth Commission proposed by the Brazilian government last December with the purpose of exposing the “horrors” committed under the de facto military governments.
“This history of tortures is not mine, it’s our history, the history of a country that must be recorded and told so that we can all learn not to repeat mistakes,” said Albuquerque Saboya who was honored together with 14 other women militants and political prisoners at the Ministry of Justice on the International Woman Day.
“It is far worse seeing how someone is tortured than being tortured. I still have recorded in my mind when a prisoner begged for his death, begged he be killed to end the suffering of torture,” said Albuquerque Saboya who was imprisoned with her father and brother in the sixties.
Last December the Brazilian minister of Defense Nelson Jobim and the commanders of the three services threatened to resign when President Lula announced the creation of a Truth Commission to investigate military crimes committed during the dictatorship.
The Ministry of Justice that sponsors the creation of the Truth Commission, wants to look into the crimes of the military, an issue which triggered a major cabinet crisis for President Lula.
The military leaked to the press that they also would like to see a commission which exposed the crimes committed by the “Marxist insurgents,” among which they listed top officials from the Lula administration including cabinet chief and incumbent presidential candidate Dilma Rousseff.
The Catholic Church also opposed the human rights initiative as drafted by the Ministry of Justice because the bill contained chapters referred to the legalization of abortion and same gender marriages.
Similarly Brazilian landowners rejected a wide interpretation of the use of land which they believed could encourage the occupation of farmland or allegedly non-exploited farms. Brazil has a strong movement of “landless peasants” which roam the countryside in search of plots to occupy.