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News :: International
Federal Police are serving a removal warrant. It is going to take place next week
09 Jan 2005
The Federal Police are serving a removal warrant. It is going to take place next week. Before they do it, it would be good if the press could come over and film how our crops were beautiful. They want us to be removed and be sent back to the former 26 hectares.
In 1999, following the Brazilian legislation (The Brazilian Constitution and the 1775/96 Decree), the Federal Government sent to the Municipality of Antonio João, in the State of Mato Grosso do
Sul, a research group led by an anthropologist with the intent of carrying out an identification study. The objective of this researchwas to determine whether or not the land belonged to the Ñanderu Marangatu community. If it belonged to the Kaiowa Indians or belonged to farmers and ranchers. The anthropological report
responded affirmatively: the land is ours.

It is difficult for us to understand why we are still waiting outside our land. The law says it is ours. The law has determined that our land be demarcated. We have been waiting, since 1998, in a 26 hectare area we reoccupeid. In 2004, demarcation posts were placed in the boundaries of the identified land. Who ordered it was no one less than the Minister of Justice. The land had been declared ours, years before, by another Minister of Justice.

We made up our minds to take a piece of land larger than the 26 hectares we are currently occupying. We entered a portion of Morro
Alto farmland. When the struggle to regain our land first started, this portion of land was occupied by Mr. Filhote Roldão. Aware of the fact that his land was within a conflict area in which law suits might result, he sold it to a man named Anatá. When he died, his son resold it to a man called Altamir. We have been waiting outside our
land for 50 years. The former, who is an ousider, has come to grow plantations in in our land. He arrived a little more than a year ago. We are not going to take it. For this reason, at the end of
last year, we se out to occupy this little piece of land, that is ours. We occupied it and and grew our crops. We did not grow soybeans, because indians have naver fed on soybeans. We grew
manioc, beans, potatoes, rice, bananas. Each family grew its own crop. We managed, with great sacrifice, to buy the seeds. The corn
has already grown. The manioc is growing. Everything is becoming very beautiful.

Few days ago, however, we learned that a Federal Judge has issued orders to make us leave. The Federal Police are serving a removal
warrant. It is going to take place next week. Before they do it, it would be good if the press could come over and film how our crops were beautiful. They want us to be removed and be sent back to the former 26 hectares. We heard it said that the police are coming with a tractor to destroy everything. We would like to know who is going to feed our children. Are the farmers going to provide us with a truck load of staples? Are our children going to go Undernourished?

We would like to let the police know that we are not leaving. This is final. We are not leaving the land alive. Instead of removing us, they had better kill us. We warn them to bring a
tractor along, a bulldozer. We will wait while they dig our graves.
We are not going to watch peacefully our folks being mistreated. We are going to react. We are not afraid of defending our land and fighting for our lives and the survival of our children.

I am not afraid of dying for my land, my community, and my people. I do not say that because I speak Portuguese fluently, I say so
because I am an Indian. If Justice is not going to do anything, we are going to make justice. This is the way it goes, the struggle is never easy. If the Government has no money to pay for our land, thus, we are going to pay it with our own blood.

The farmers have already got rich on us. They have been here for 50 years. They have profited on our detriment. Enough is enough. We want our land back. We want to be able to work on it again. The way it is, it cannot go on. We want to work, work in the land which is ours.

THE KAIOWA COMMUNITY IN ÑANDERU MARANGATU – ANTONIO JOÃO (MS) BRAZIL

If you are interested in fighting human rights violations, please make this e-mail circulate. For further information on how the events are unfolding, please contact me.
nanderumarangatu (at) hotmail.com.br

Copies sent to Time Magazine, Newsweek Magazine, Reuters Agency, New York Times, Le Mond, Survival International, Amnesty international, Folha de São Paulo, Correio Braziliense, Rede Globo de Televisão,
Sistema Brasileiro de Televisão (SBT), Procuradoria-Geral da República, Associação Brasileira de Antropologia, Conselho
Indigenista Missionário, Fundação Nacional do Índio, Presidência da República, Ministério da Justiça.

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Comments

What do you want us to do?
09 Jan 2005
When was the last time ANYONE in Boston picked a ripe banana?


Who locally in BOSTON knows what an " hectare" is?

At least it fills up the blank space on the right......

Hey Matt and Pete, you should feature this!!!!!!