Eye on the Amazon

Day 11: Parakana Leaders Join the Belo Monte Occupation

Parakana Warrior (Credit: Atossa Soltani / Amazon Watch)

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Sunday, the 11th day of occupation of the Belo Monte Pimental dam site, was a special day marked by the arrival of nearly 30 Parakana leaders who are a full day of boat travel upriver to get here. In all, 17 indigenous villages from six different ethnicities are currently represented at the occupation. They are demanding that construction of the Belo Monte dam be stopped until Norte Energia and the government can adequately mitigate the disastrous impacts of the dam on local indigenous communities.

The indigenous occupiers spent the day bathing in the Xingu, meeting and planning and ended the day with each group performing their traditional dances and songs. Early this morning, several dozen entered the nearby Norte Energia work camp to see firsthand the destruction in the surrounding areas. They were able to travel along the newly constructed access road, see the massive construction sites including quarries and workers' housing camps.

Karangre Xikrin, an elder warrior lamented: "We are so sad, so very sad. The river will die because of Belo Monte. Everything, the turtles, the snakes, the fish, the rays, all will be finished."

Karangre Xikrin, Elder (Credit: Rafael Salazar)

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