AMERICA/BRAZIL - The cry for help from the Yanomami communities and indigenous reservations

Thursday, 21 April 2022 indigenous   human rights   local churches  


Brasilia (Agenzia Fides) - "Faithful to its mystical and prophetic commitment to the cry of the poor and the earth, the Special Pastoral Episcopal Commission for the Fight against Human Trafficking (CEPEETH) expresses its solidarity and commitment to the defense of community life of Yanomami communities and forests, especially in indigenous reservation areas; it repudiates and denounces with indignation all forms of exploitation and violence, especially sexual violence against women, adolescents and of children", reads the note published by CEPEETH" repudiating the violence against the Yanomami people ".
In the document sent to Fides, the Commission of the Brazilian Bishops' Conference refers to the report recently published by the Hutukara Yanomami Association, which describes the dramatic reality in which the Yanomami communities of Amazonas, of Roraima live. It also points out that in 2021, mining increased by 46% in indigenous reservations. "The number of criminal attacks against Yanomami communities is alarming and desperate", reads the CEPEETH statement.
The report documents sexual violence and rape suffered by Yanomami women and adolescents at the hands of invading prospectors who carry out criminal mining activities, contaminating waterways and forests with mercury, and thereby damaging the health of the populations living there. "The Yanomami people are threatened, violated and find themselves in a very vulnerable situation, living in precarious conditions, starving, malnourished and subject to endemic, infectious and contagious diseases, such as malaria. It should be noted that Covid 19 has also caused serious losses and consequences for indigenous peoples".
"All this is the result of the inertia of the Brazilian State, especially the federal government, which explicitly carries out actions aimed at expelling peoples and communities from their traditional lands", denounces the note signed by the Bishop of Marajò, Evaristo Pascoal Spengler, President of CEPEETH, who joins the call of indigenous leaders for the federal government to review its actions and put an end to the violence and suffering of the Yanomami people, listening to their call for help. (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 21/4/2022)