The Brazilian government says it will provide security protection for at least 131 people threatened with murder over land use disputes in the Amazon rainforest after a series of killings in recent months. Those
receiving death threats — including environmentalists, human rights activists, and local farmers defending their land against ranchers — will receive various levels of protection, from regular visits to 24-hour armed security, an official with the government’s human rights secretariat said. While violent disputes over land and natural resources are common in the Amazon, calls for a government response have grown since four people were killed last month. The violence attracted international attention in May when activist JosÃ© ClÃ¡udio Ribeiro da Silva and his wife, Maria do EspÃrito Santo, were gunned down by unknown assailants a day after Brazil’s lower house of congress voted to ease forest protection laws. The couple had spent more than a decade fighting illegal logging, ranchers, and charcoal producers. After their deaths, activists provided the Brazilian government a list of 207 people who had received death threats, including 42 who had already been murdered.
Via Amazoom Press