Last year, 39 people were murdered in land-related conflicts in all Brazilian territory. Although this number is smaller than that of 2003, when there were 73 deaths, the amount of people involved in conflicts related to illegal occupation, camping, slave work, or disrespect to work legislation went up from 1,690 in 2003, to 1,801 in 2004.
This information was issued by the Rural Conflicts in Brazil 2004 report, prepared by the Catholic Church’s Land Pastoral Commission (CPT) and released April 19, in Brasília.
According to CPT’s president, Dom Tomás Balduíno, the publication recalls the assassination of American missionary Dorothy Stang, in Anapu, state of Pará, in the beginning of this year.
“Killing people became a profession in Pará. Anywhere, it is possible to find people willing to do it,” affirmed CPT’s coordinator José Batista Afonso.
The Land Pastoral Commission defends federalization of the investigation of Stang’s assassination. In Afonso’s opinion, it is the best way to ensure justice in this case.