Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Brazil Votes to Create Indigenous Reserve

After 15 years and a recent vote suspension, a decision has finally been made in favor of the creation of Brazil's Raposa Serra do Sol indigenous reserve. Eight of eleven Supreme Court judges voted in favor of the four million acre reserve. The reserve, soon to be one of the largest of its kind, is nestled in the Amazon and borders Venezuela. Farmers, ranchers, miners, etc. who have occupied the reserve and had violent clashes with its indigenous inhabitants will be evicted. According to the NY Times, the debate over the reserve "set off a sharp controversy over property rights, the limits of government authority and the rights of Indians to their original lands." The AAA congratulates members and advocates who have worked diligently to support and protect the rights of Brazil's indigenous peoples.