Brazil’s Eco-Warriors at Risk of Assassination

What do Francisco Alves Mendes Filho and Francisco da Silva have in common? They were both murdered because of their fight against a coalition of loggers, farmers and cattle ranchers in Brazil. It is a battle that has been going on for 20 years+ . On one side the environmentalists who want to protect the Amazon Rain forest and human rights in an area that still has slave labor and child prostitution. On the other side the loggers, farmers and cattle ranchers.

The list of dead goes on.
Between July and October, 2001, six rural environmental and labor activists were murdered in separate incidents in Brazil’s northeast state of Para, and a number of their colleagues received death threats or found their names listed on an anonymously circulated “death list.”

Dionisio Ribeiro Filho, 59, was shot in the head at the entrance to the Tingua federal reserve, on February 24, 2005, about 19 miles (30 km) from Rio de Janeiro city, after he defended it from poachers and illegal palm tree cutters. His death followed the Feb. 12 killing of prominent US human rights and environmental activist Dorothy Stang as she set up a government peasant farming reserve in the state of Para and defended it from illegal loggers and ranchers.

Hundreds of Brazil’s Eco-Warriors at Risk of Assassination

A report, compiled by Brazil’s Catholic Land Commission (CPT) and due to be released in full early next year, reveals that at least 260 people, among them a Catholic bishop, live under the threat of murder because of their fight against a coalition of loggers, farmers and cattle ranchers.

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