News-Letter Nr. 551

Xukuru people launch campaign

Two weeks after the attempted murder of the Xukuru chief Marcos Luidson, when two indigenous people were killed in Pesqueira, state of Pernambuco, few measures have been taken to ensure the chief's security and that of his people. Last week, organizations that support the indigenous cause requested urgent measures to investigate the case.

Since 1986, when the Xukuru people of Ororub began to fight for their right to live in their traditional territory, farmers who occupy the land began to threaten them. Since then, the following persons were killed: in 1992, José Everaldo Bishop, the son of the shaman; in 1995, lawyer Geraldo Rolim in 1998, chief Xicão in 2001, Chico Quelé and in 2003, Josenilson José dos Santos and José Admilson.

The Xukuru people believe that the steps taken by the Federal Police and the Public Prosecution Service so far are intended to incriminate the leaders of the people for the purpose of destroying their social organization.

Given these facts, the Xukuru people are asking civil organizations, sympathetic people, parliamentarians, and all those who are fighting for the indigenous cause and human rights to send e-mails, faxes and letters to the Office of the President of the Republic, the Ministry of Justice, the Special Secretariat for Human Rights, Funai, and the Attorney General asking the Brazilian authorities to satisfy the clams of the Xukuru people.

Here is the full text of the claims of the Xukuru people:

"Given the situation we are facing, we believe that the following steps should be taken to ensure the security of our people and solve our problem once and for all:

  1. The improvements made in our land in good faith by occupants who are still in it should be immediately reassessed and fully compensated for;
  2. We support the desire of some members of the Xukuru community who live in the Cimbres, Cajueiro and Guarda villages to establish a new village. However, since there is no space in the already demarcated territory of the Xukuru people of Ororub for a new village to be set up, our suggestion is that the federal administration should set apart a new area for that purpose just for the Xukuru people of Ororub ;
  3. The following measures should be taken to ensure the security of our territory:
    • The state government should be persuaded to change the route of the PE 219 highway so that it doesn't cross the Xukuru land, thus ridding our people from embarrassments caused by the access of outsiders to it;
    • Sentry boxes should be set up in key points in the main roads providing access to the indigenous land, so that the Xukuru themselves may protect their territory according to their own social organization;
    • Favorable conditions should be made available for the indigenous people themselves to protect the physical integrity of traditional Xukuru leaders according to their own organizational model;
    • A communication system should be implemented to meet the needs of all the Xukuru villages, comprising the following elements:
      • The necessary radiophonic equipment;
      • Concession of a community radio station;
      • Installation of payphones in all villages;
  4. The designation of a public defender and of a neutral chief of police from another region.
  5. A transportation system should be set up to meet the needs of our Chief and of other Xukuru leaders inside and outside the indigenous land."

The messages should be sent to the following addresses:

Presidência da República
Presidente Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva
Praça dos Três Poderes, Palácio do Planalto - 3º andar
Brasília - DF - 70150-900
Fax: 61-411-2222
E-mail: ou

Ministério da Justiça
Ministro Márcio Thomaz Bastos
Esplanada do Ministérios - Bloco T - 4º andar
Brasília - DF - 70064-900
Fax: 61-322-6817 / 61-224-4784

Secretaria Especial de Direitos Humanos
Ministro Nilmário Miranda
Fax: 61-223-2260

Fundação Nacional do Índio (Funai)
Presidente Eduardo Almeida
SEPS Quadra 702/902 Projeção A, Ed. Lex
Brasília - DF - 70.390-025 Brasil
Fax: 61-226-8782 / 61-313-3660

Procuradoria Geral da República
Procurador Geraldo Brindeiro
SAF Sul - Quadra 04 Conj. C
Brasília - DF - 70.050-900
Fax: 61-3031-6493

Bras¡lia, 20 February 2003.
Cimi - Indianist Missionary Council

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