• Categories
  • Archives

Brazil Wants Its Share of Indian Riches

The Brazilian government wants mining to cease on Indian lands. For this purpose, it set up an operational group which has 15 days to submit proposals to monitor and ensure the adoption of adequate and suitable measures to prevent all forms of mining on Indian lands.


By Luciana Vasconcelos

The group should especially examine mining within the territories of the Roosevelt, Serra Morena, and Apiruanã reservations and the Aripuanã Indian Park, all located in the states of Rondônia and Mato Grosso.


The group is made up of three representatives of the Ministry of Justice – one from the Federal Police, one from the Federal Highway Police, and one from the National Indian Foundation (Funai) -, and one each from the Presidential Office of Institutional Security, the Ministry of Defense, and the National Department of Mineral Production, linked to the Ministry of Mines and Energy.


A conflict between Cinta-Larga Indians, from the Roosevelt reservation, and prospectors early in April caused 29 deaths in the region, in Rondônia.


The reservation, which is 580 kilometers from the state capital, Porto Velho, contains one of the world’s largest diamond reserves. Luiz Paulo Barreto, Executive Secretary of the Ministry of Justice, informed that mining on reservations is prohibited.


According to the Secretary, the reservation is protected today by 20 Federal Police officers, 20 Federal Highway Police officers, and 10 military police officers from Rondônia.


Barreto affirmed that, if necessary, the detail could be reinforced, and the Armed Forces could also be called upon to guarantee security in the locale.


The Roosevelt reservation is currently the object of illegal mining activities by local prospectors and even the Indians themselves.


“This reservation lies within an Indian village and is the object of general plunder,” Barreto observed.


“The information we have is that diamonds worth many millions of dollars have left this region and gone directly into the hands of international smugglers,” he pointed out.


The Secretary also informed that approximately US$ 1 million were allocated for the Funai to implant projects in the region, to enable the Indians to manage without having to extract diamonds.


He said that the lands are closed to mining, pending the approval of a project to regulate mineral extraction on Indian lands. There is currently a bill before the National Congress to regulate mineral extraction in these areas.


“What is essential is to regulate [these activities] in an intelligent manner, safeguarding the Indians’ interest, patrimony, and culture; providing for environmental restoration; and determining that the Union will be the biggest recipient of benefits from the subsoil,” he underscored.


According to Barreto, the regulations state that the Indians will be consulted about mining on their lands. With permission from the Indians, the Ministry of Justice will send the National Congress specific authorization requests for each mineral deposit.


If the Congress assents, the government can call for bids. The winning firm will be expected to pay the government royalties for quarrying the diamonds, take responsibility for restoring the environment, and establish a fund for the Indians.


Agência Brasil
Translator: David Silberstein

Tags:

  • Show Comments (1)

  • nino spinelli

    Brazilian government is subject to the Cinta_larga
    I strongly suggest The leaders of Brazil and anyone who care about the earth to read the Hopi Prophecy http://www.welcomehome.org/rainbow/prophecy/hopi1.html I live in Arizona, ths U.S.A., has and still extracts minerals from the land of these sacred people. You will only bring destruction to the land unless you understand that these ancient cultures and their ways are far more importand than we in the “modern” “civilized” cultures ever imagined. The balance of the world depends on keeping them intact and learning and embracing what they can teach us. Whos’ culture is the “advanced” one? the culture that destroyes and polutes the land and makes wars? Or the culture that lives in harmony with the land and is at peace and communion with the very plants!?

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Ads

You May Also Like

Lula’s Popularity Falls 6% in Brazil

The 75th survey of Brazil’s National Confederation of Transport (CNT) and the Sensus Institute ...

Brazil’s Forest Monitoring Know-How May Be Used in Africa

Brazil's Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa) may take satellite ground monitoring systems to African countries. ...

Brazilian Supermarkets Expecting 6.5% Surge in Sales for 2007

Sales at supermarkets in Brazil grew by 6.4% in the month of August compared ...

Brazil’s Mining Co. Vale Seems to Have Bought Overpriced Rio Tinto

Brazilian mining company Vale do Rio Doce may have paid too much for its ...

Comparing Discriminatory Policing and Social Action in Brazil and the US

The disproportionately harsh and violent treatment of African-Americans by law enforcement officials has been ...

A U.S. Foundation to Save Olinda, a Brazilian Treasure

The city of Olinda, a small historical town in Brazil, which is practically integrated ...

Foreign Investors Make Brazilian Stocks Boom

Latin American markets had a robust session, with international investors continuing to boost the ...

Head and Soul

The power behind the throne in the Lula presidency will be José Dirceu,  a ...

Disunity Rally

President Fernando Henrique Cardoso called the march undemocratic since one of its objectives was ...