Archive for September, 2012

Brazil: Indigenous Peoples of Mato Grosso close roads in protest against Decree 303 that eliminates indigenous rights

Saturday, September 1st, 2012

By Rebecca Sommer

Sixteen different indigenous ethnicities of State Mato Grosso, Brazil, precisely those who live on the south and west of the state, the Cinta-Largas, Enawenê-Nawê,Nambikwara, Haliti-Pareci, Irantxe, Rikbatsa, Kayabi, Umutina, Bakairi and others came together to show their outrage against Decree 303 and against what they are calling the “scrapping” of the FUNAI (Buerau of Indian Affairs in Brazil)

This demonstration  gets a lot of media coverage, as the indigenous peoples continue to block the access to two major interstate highways, BR-174 and BR-364 – hitting effectively the economic nerve of the state.

They began their action still at night. They brought tents, hammocks, cooking gear and food to spend at least seven days without having to return home or call for help, prepared to spend much more time, if needed.

The protestors are over 1400, the young and old willing to face cold, heat, the pressure of angry car and truck drivers, governmental authorities, and the minute by minute  discussions often ending in being shouted at – while always trying to debate with whoever comes to disrupt their protest.

The regional group of determined Indigenous Peoples protest against everything that is happening with the reform and restructuring of the FUNAI (Buerau of Indian Affairs) and Brazilian indigenous rights/land issues that are significantly detoriating especially in the past five years, and increasingly under the new president Dilma.

They strongly protest against the new Decree 303,  that came out last month, and that has alerted and alarmed those of us that are part of the world’s indigenous movement and indigenous and/or are allies of the Indigenous Peoples human rights and survival struggle.

They also protest against the so-called “scrapping” of the FUNAI, that was announced as well as a product of Decree 7056/2009,  that basically destroyed that little bit what has worked at the FUNAI,  in the already to the minimum functionality reduced governmental organ –  namely the  administrational work at large, and their indigenous posts inside the areas where Indigenous Peoples reside, to replace them with cheaper local non-specialized nor experienced staff that overtook the work of administration and coordination with the result that in most regions services, funds and attendments are absolute and severely collapsing, leaving the Indigenous Peoples even more in limbo.

I am not saying, FUNAI is/was great, indeed it has always been a branch of the government under-fundet, and politicized.

But considering the new developments, looking back, the FUNAI, an historical institution of about hundred years, with many of them “indigenistas” of the old times,  gave a lot of strength to the guarantee and protection of indigenous lands, which helped the Indigenous Peoples for many years to find their way through the world of white invaders and Brazilian main stream society. Funai, say many now,  has  been thrown in the trash like old paper, exchanged by the “CLTS”,  with very few offices installed in nearby towns and even than to this day often not up and running.

The CLTS, all these changes are weakening the protection of indigenous land and interests, and leave the indigenous peoples in every region even more vulnerable to the many ways and means of white people’s politics, and their ambitions to the indigenous lands.

The dismantling of the Funai created an uproar of protest by the Indigenous Peoples. In the northeast the Indigenous Peoples stayed day and night for 2 weeks inside the FUNAI office before being removed.

Many Indigenous Peoples of Brazil felt the impact of the changes, and began to experience sometimes very severe hardships because of  Funai’s re-strukturing process  (elimination process, really) with it’s many disruptions and delivery needs coming in some cases for months to an absolute halt.  Indigenous peoples  remained in most cases quite and calm due to their great hopes that there would be an reversal of this disruption, disfunction and dismantling, and only a question of time before coming back to a certain functionality to what already existed in services .. that were more or less working.

That hope is now gone, in any region of Brazil, there are not one indigenous peoples that believe things will get back to more or less, or to even get better. Now that Decree 303 came out, which is obviously a sign of contempt for the Indigenous Peoples of Brazil, blew the lid of the pot.

The protesting Indigenous groups of Mato Grosso for example are organized,  and strategic. They demand a word of President Dilma towards repeal of 303 and the reformulation of Funai.

If President Dilma through her ministers gives a signal that this decree 303 will be thrown in the trash, instead of the regional indigenous FUNAI out-posts, and the 7778 decree of the Funai re-restructuring is canceled or redone properly, the protesters will leave their challenging position and return to their villages.

In my view, the Indigenous Peoples of Brazil had enough. The gulf of mistrust of the Indigenous Peoples to the federal government and the authorities in general may cause an attitude of disrespect to Brazilian authorities,  and very weird thing could happen in the near future.

As far as I understand the decree 303, it clarifies that the land is for restricted use, and not their land. None of the already ratified indigenous lands could be enlarged.  The Indigenous Peoples also have,  according to the decree 303,  no rights to the water or natural resources on their lands, or the right to say no, if it is for example a military activity for whatsoever reasons. If a road is constructed through their territory, or electricity lines , or hydroelectric dams,  or mining operations, it can be done if it is specifically of interest to  . . .(?).  Also, the Indigenous Peoples would not be allowed to receive payment from, for example, tourism, based on the decree.

International human rights standards, such as the OIT Convention 169 or UNDRIP are clearly violated by this Decree 303.

Youth outrage as EU reveals no intention to fight climate change

Saturday, September 1st, 2012

LONDON / BANGKOK – Today, young people across Europe expressed outrage as the EU revealed its intention to stick to an embarrassingly weak CO2 reduction target of 20% by 2020.

At an informal session of the UN climate negotiations in Bangkok, Thailand, the EU announced the plan, explaining that “25% is not reality, it is wishful thinking.” This is despite repeated warnings from the scientific community that sticking the current pledge of 20% will risk a catastrophic 6°C global temperature rise.

The EU revealed that it is closing discussion on the 2020 targets to focus on emissions reductions for 2030 – meaning that it will not consider further progress on emissions reductions for another decade. Increasing pre-2020 emission reduction targets was a key part of the Durban agreement, but the EU this week rejected a part of the Durban package which would have ensured immediate emissions cuts before looking to a 2030 climate deal.

Although the EU has traditionally held a more hesitant stance regarding an increase in ambition, it has previously claimed to be willing to “speed up progress” if “others will too” (Connie Hedegaard, Twitter 29/08/12). In today’s highly disappointing revelation of its true intentions, an EU delegate claimed that the “actions” of countries should be the focus, using vocabulary widely recognised to allude to developing countries’ commitments.

The EU claimed that it was  “unlikely to see changes in pledges this year or in other parts of the world.” The claim was an apparent oversight of developing countries’ commitments which have long surpassed developed countries’ low pledges to reducing emissions. As a result of today’s announcement, the EU’s stance is fast becoming known among civil society as the “false face” of EU climate diplomacy.

As many have looked to the EU to take leadership at the UN’s climate talks, the announcement will no doubt come as a damning blow. Millions around the world, particularly in the poorest areas, are already living with the effects of climate change. As the poorest suffer, today’s announcement indicates that the world’s richest are ignoring their responsibility to act first and fastest.

“With this move the EU has confirmed that it’s putting short-term, private profit ahead of the future wellbeing of its population, buddying-up with dirty fuel corporations instead of accepting the responsibility it has towards developing countries,” said Lucy Patterson, 25, a campaigner from the UK Youth Climate Coalition and Push Europe. “We need the EU to commit to at least 40% domestic reductions by 2020 to prevent catastrophic climate change – 20% is shameful and we will not accept it.”

“With this decision, the EU is speaking the language of polluters and not its own people. We as young Europeans want to highlight that EU officials are not representing our views, and we would like to apologise to the international community for their actions. We urgently need EU leaders to face up to their responsibility. Act now, strengthen emission reductions.” said Koen Verbruggen, 28, from Friends of the Earth Flanders-Brussels and Power Shift Belgium.

“Europe has the potential to make a transition to a low-carbon economy that is based on social and environmental justice, whilst helping poor nations to do the same,” added Marco Cadena from Push Europe. “We still believe this is possible. However, we need better leadership. Decisions should be in line with science, and they should be made by informed and responsible leaders, not by corporations. We are at the beginning of a full-scale climate crisis and we can’t afford to sit and watch oil companies rake in their profit while current and future generations are wiped out.”


Saturday, September 1st, 2012

Dispõe sobre as salvaguardas institucionais às terras indígenas conforme entendimento fixado pelo Supremo Tribunal Federal na Petição 3.388 RR.

O ADVOGADO-GERAL DA UNIÃO, no uso das atribuições que lhe conferem o art. 87, parágrafo único, inciso II, da Constituição Federal e o art. 4º, incisos X e XVIII, da Lei Complementar nº 73, de 10 de fevereiro de 1993, e considerando a necessidade de normatizar a atuação das unidades da Advocacia-Geral da União em relação às salvaguardas institucionais às terras indígenas, nos termos do entendimento fixado pelo Supremo Tribunal Federal na Petição 3.388-Roraima (caso Raposa Serra do Sol), cujo alcance já foi esclarecido por intermédio do PARECER nº153/2010/DENOR/CGU/AGU, devidamente aprovado, resolve:

Art. 1º. Fixar a interpretação das salvaguardas às terras indígenas, a ser uniformemente seguida pelos órgãos jurídicos da Administração Pública Federal direta e indireta, determinando que se observe o decidido pelo STF na Pet. 3.888-Roraima, na forma das condicionantes abaixo:

“(I) o usufruto das riquezas do solo, dos rios e dos lagos existentes nas terras indígenas (art. 231, § 2º, da Constituição Federal) pode ser relativizado sempre que houver, como dispõe o art. 231, 6º, da Constituição, relevante interesse público da União, na forma de lei complementar”.

“(II) o usufruto dos índios não abrange o aproveitamento de recursos hídricos e potenciais energéticos, que dependerá sempre de autorização do Congresso Nacional”.

“(III) o usufruto dos índios não abrange a pesquisa e lavra das riquezas minerais, que dependerá sempre de autorização do Congresso Nacional assegurando-lhes a participação nos resultados da lavra, na forma da Lei”.

“(IV) o usufruto dos índios não abrange a garimpagem nem a faiscação, devendo, se for o caso, ser obtida a permissão de lavra garimpeira”.

“(V) o usufruto dos índios não se sobrepõe ao interesse da política de defesa nacional; a instalação de bases, unidades e postos militares e demais intervenções militares, a expansão estratégica da malha viária, a exploração de alternativas energéticas de cunho estratégico e o resguardo das riquezas de cunho estratégico, a critério dos órgãos competentes (Ministério da Defesa e Conselho de Defesa Nacional), serão implementados independentemente de consulta às comunidades indígenas envolvidas ou à FUNAI”.

“(VI) a atuação das Forças Armadas e da Polícia Federal na área indígena, no âmbito de suas atribuições, fica assegurada e se dará independentemente de consulta às comunidades indígenas envolvidas ou à FUNAI”.

“(VII) o usufruto dos índios não impede a instalação, pela União Federal, de equipamentos públicos, redes de comunicação, estradas e vias de transporte, além das construções necessárias à prestação de serviços públicos pela União, especialmente os de saúde e educação”.

“(VIII) o usufruto dos índios na área afetada por unidades de conservação fica sob a responsabilidade do Instituto Chico Mendes de Conservação da Biodiversidade”.

“(IX) o Instituto Chico Mendes de Conservação da Biodiversidade responderá pela administração da área da unidade de conservação também afetada pela terra indígena com a participação das comunidades indígenas, que deverão ser ouvidas, levando-se em conta os usos, tradições e costumes dos indígenas, podendo para tanto contar com a consultoria da FUNAI”.

“(X) o trânsito de visitantes e pesquisadores não-índios deve ser admitido na área afetada à unidade de conservação nos horários e condições estipulados pelo Instituto Chico Mendes de Conservação da Biodiversidade”.

“(XI) devem ser admitidos o ingresso, o trânsito e a permanência de não-índios no restante da área da terra indígena, observadas as condições estabelecidas pela FUNAI”.

“(XII) o ingresso, o trânsito e a permanência de não-índios não pode ser objeto de cobrança de quaisquer tarifas ou quantias de qualquer natureza por parte das comunidades indígenas”.

“(XIII) a cobrança de tarifas ou quantias de qualquer natureza também não poderá incidir ou ser exigida em troca da utilização das estradas, equipamentos públicos, linhas de transmissão de energia ou de quaisquer outros equipamentos e instalações colocadas a serviço do público, tenham sido excluídos expressamente da homologação, ou não”.

“(XIV) as terras indígenas não poderão ser objeto de arrendamento ou de qualquer ato ou negócio jurídico que restrinja o pleno exercício do usufruto e da posse direta pela comunidade indígena ou pelos índios (art. 231, § 2º, Constituição Federal c/c art. 18, caput, Lei nº 6.001/1973)”.

“(XV) é vedada, nas terras indígenas, a qualquer pessoa estranha aos grupos tribais ou comunidades indígenas, a prática de caça, pesca ou coleta de frutos, assim como de atividade agropecuária ou extrativa (art. 231, § 2º, Constituição Federal, c/c art. 18, § 1º. Lei nº 6.001/1973)”.

“(XVI) as terras sob ocupação e posse dos grupos e das comunidades indígenas, o usufruto exclusivo das riquezas naturais e das utilidades existentes nas terras ocupadas, observado o disposto nos arts. 49, XVI e 231, § 3º, da CR/88, bem como a renda indígena (art. 43 da Lei nº 6.001/1973), gozam de plena imunidade tributária, não cabendo à cobrança de quaisquer impostos, taxas ou contribuições sobre uns e ou outros”.

“(XVII) é vedada a ampliação da terra indígena já demarcada”.

“(XVIII) os direitos dos índios relacionados às suas terras são imprescritíveis e estas são inalienáveis e indisponíveis (art. 231,§ 4º, CR/88)”.

“(XIX) é assegurada a participação dos entes federados no procedimento administrativo de demarcação das terras indígenas, encravadas em seus territórios, observada a fase em que se encontrar o procedimento”.

Art. 2º. Os procedimentos em curso que estejam em desacordo com as condicionantes indicadas no art. 1º serão revistos no prazo de cento e vinte dias, contado da data da publicação desta Portaria.

Art. 3º. Os procedimentos finalizados serão revisados e adequados a presente Portaria.

Art. 4º. O procedimento relativo à condicionante XVII, no que se refere à vedação de ampliação de terra indígena mediante revisão de demarcação concluída, não se aplica aos casos de vício insanável ou de nulidade absoluta.

Art. 5°. O procedimento relativo à condicionante XIX é aquele fixado por portaria do Ministro de Estado da Justiça.

Art. 6º. Esta Portaria entra em vigor na data de sua publicação.


BRASILIEN ALERT!!! Generalstaatsanwalt der UNION – 303 Verordnung vom 16. Juli 2012

Saturday, September 1st, 2012


Indigenous Peoples BRAZIL Alarm !!!: ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE UNION – 303 ORDINANCE OF 16 JULY 2012

Saturday, September 1st, 2012

Non official translation by Earth Peoples


Provides for the institutional safeguards to Indigenous Peoples lands as understanding set by the Supreme Court on Petition 3388 RR.

ADVOCATE GENERAL OF THE UNION, using the powers conferred upon him by art. 87, sole paragraph, section II of the Federal Constitution and art. 4, items X and XVIII, Supplementary Law No. 73 of February 10, 1993, and considering the need to regulate the activities of the units of the Attorney General’s Office regarding institutional safeguards for indigenous lands, in terms of understanding fixed by the Supreme Court in 3388-Petition Roraima (Raposa Serra do Sol), whose range has been clarified through the OPINION paragraph 153/2010/DENOR/CGU/AGU duly approved, resolves:

Article 1. Fix the interpretation of safeguards for indigenous lands, to be uniformly applied by judicial organs of the Federal direct and indirect, determining that the notice by the Supreme Court decided in Pet. 3888-Roraima, in the form of the conditions below:

“(I) the enjoyment of the riches of the soil, rivers and lakes existing in indigenous lands (art. 231, § 2, of the Constitution) can be relativized whenever there is a relevant public interest of the Union in the form of a supplementary law,  art. 231, 6, of the Constitution. “

“(II) the enjoyment of Indigenous Peoples does not encompasses the use of water resources and energy potential, which will always depend on congressional authorization.”

“(III) the enjoyment of the Indigenous Peoples do not cover the prospecting and mining of mineral resources, which will always depend on congressional authorization while assuring them involvement in the mining results, according to Law.”

“(IV) the enjoyment of Indigenous Peoples does not include mining nor faiscação(?) and should, if necessary, be obtained through a small-scale mining permission.”

“(V) the enjoyment of Indigenous Peoples does not outweigh the interest of national defense policy, the installation of military bases, units and posts and other military interventions, the expansion of the strategic road network, the exploitation of alternative energy sources of strategic nature and seclusion of wealth of strategic nature, which is at the discretion of the competent bodies (Ministry of Defense and the National Defense Council), that will be implemented regardless of consultation with indigenous communities involved or FUNAI. “

“(Vi) the performance of the Armed Forces and Federal Police in the Indigenous Peoplesarea, as part of its duties, shall be secured and will occur regardless of consultation with indigenous communities involved or FUNAI.”

“(VII) the enjoyment of Indigenous Peoples does not prevent the installation, by the Federal Government, of public facilities, communication networks, roads and transportation facilities, besides the buildings necessary for the provision of public services by the Union, especially for health and education” .

“(VIII)  Indigenous Peoples enjoyment and use of/in protected areas is under the responsibility of the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation.”

“(IX) the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation  responds to, and manages the protected areas of Indigenous Peoples land with the participation of the indigenous communities, which should be heard, while taking into account the customs, traditions and customs of Indigenous Peoples and can count on advice from FUNAI. “

“(X) the traffic of visitors and non-Indigenous Peoples researchers shall be permitted in protected areas in the hours and conditions stipulated by the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation.”

“(XI) (the traffic of visitors and non-Indigenous Peoples) shall be allowed entry, transit and stay of non-Indigenous Peoples on the remaining area of ​​indigenous land to the conditions set out by FUNAI.”

“(XII) entry, transit and stay of non-Indigenous persons can not be the object of collection of any amounts or charges of any kind on the part of indigenous communities.”

“(XIII) the charging of fees or sums of whatever nature cannot be requested/imposed in exchange for the use of roads, public facilities, power transmission lines or other equipment and facilities placed in service to the public (on indigenous land), and are expressly excluded from approval, regardless if the Indigenous Territory was ratified, or not. “

“(XIV) indigenous lands can not be leased or object of any act or legal business that restrict the full exercise and enjoyment of the direct ownership by the indigenous community or by the Indigenous Peoples (art. 231, § 2 of the Federal Constitution c / c art. 18, caput, Law No. 6.001/1973). “

“(XV)  It is forbidden to any person outside the tribal groups or indigenous communities, the practice of hunting, fishing and gathering fruit, as well as mining or agricultural activities on indigenous land,(art. 231, § 2 of the Federal Constitution , c / c art. 18, § 1. Law No. 6.001/1973). “

“(XVI) lands under occupation and ownership of groups and indigenous communities, the exclusive use of natural resources and the existing utilities in the occupied lands, are subject to the provisions of arts. 49, XVI and 231, § 3, of CR/88 and the Indigenous Peoples income (art. 43 of Law No. 6.001/1973), enjoy full tax exemption, and are not subject for the collection of any taxes, fees or contributions on some and or others. “

“(XVII) The expanding of already demarcated indigenous lands is prohibited.”

“(XVIII) indigenous rights related to their lands are imprescriptible, which are inalienable and unavailable (art. 231, § 4, CR/88).”

“(XIX) it is ensured the participation of federal agencies in the administrative procedure of demarcation of indigenous lands, embedded in their territories, observed the phase in which they find the procedure

Article 2. The ongoing procedures that are in disagreement with the conditions indicated in art. 1st will be reviewed within one hundred twenty days from the date of publication of this Ordinance.

Article 3. The procedures will be reviewed and finalized suited to this Ordinance.

Article 4. The procedure for conditioning XVII, regarding the sealing of any expansion of indigenous land already demarcated (ratified) completed by revision does not apply to cases of incurable addiction or absolute nullity.

Section 5. The procedure for conditioning XIX is one set by ordinance of the Minister of Justice.

Article 6. This Ordinance shall enter into force on the date of its publication.