Thousands of Indigenous Women Will March in Brazil This Week

After pro-Bolsonaro rally on Brazil's Independence Day, 4,000 Indigenous women from 150 nations will gather in Brasília to continue the mobilization against the marco temporal trial, in defense of their rights and territories

Amazon Watch

For more information, contact:

Camila Rossi at crossi@amazonwatch.org or +55.11.98152.8476
Alejandra Yépez Jácome at ayepez@amazonwatch.org or +593.99.271.3867


Brasília, Brazil – While supporters of far-right President Jair Bolsonaro took to the streets yesterday to slam Brazil's Supreme Court (STF) and cast doubt on the integrity of next year's elections, heightening tensions in Latin America's largest democracy, a more important mobilization was taking place in Brasília for the future of our planet. Delegations of Indigenous women were arriving in Brazil's capital throughout the day for the Second National March of Indigenous Women, with the theme "Original women: Reforesting minds for the healing of the Earth." From September 7-11, 4,000 women from more than 150 Indigenous nations are expected to join the march and continue the mobilization against the "marco temporal" trial.

"We are seeking to secure our territories, [following] those that preceded us, for present and future generations, we are defending the environment, this common good that guarantees our ways of life, our humanity. In addition to being a mere physical resource, it is also home to the spirits of forests, animals and the waters of life as a whole, a source of our ancestral knowledge," reinforces the statement released by the National Association of Ancestral Indigenous Women Warriors (ANMIGA), the organizers of this mobilization.

In this context, the Women Defenders of the Amazon arrived from Ecuador today to show their solidarity with Brazil's Indigenous women and extend their rallying cry to this mobilization because the attacks on their rights and territories are no different in Ecuador.

"Every day, Amazonian women protect and live in balance with the rainforest. But now, we are forced to defend it from the politicians who make agreements with mining or oil companies that forcibly displace Indigenous peoples from our ancestral territories. In Ecuador, the new presidential administration is rushing to expand extractive industries deeper into pristine rainforest. Recent executive decrees, signed by president Guillermo Lasso seek to hand over Indigenous territories to mining and fossil fuel companies," shared Nina Gualinga, Mujeres Amazonicas and Women Defenders Advisor to Amazon Watch.

The Women Defenders of the Amazon emphasize that they accompany the Brazilian women as caretakers of life, united under a similar struggle, arriving in Brasilia to grow their resistance.

This mobilization follows a recent gathering of more than six thousand Indigenous people in Brasília for the "Struggle for Life" camp, the country's largest Indigenous mobilization in the last 30 years, to demand Brazil's Supreme Court reject the so-called "marco temporal" clause. If upheld, this deceptive legal theory would invalidate the land claims of Indigenous groups who did not physically occupy their territories on the day that the new constitution was signed in 1988, ignoring centuries of genocidal oppression that forced many peoples to flee their ancestral homes. After multiple delays, the STF should resume deliberations tomorrow, September 8.

"We state that Indigenous women will be on the front line to bury once and for all the 'marco temporal', during the second march of Indigenous women," emphasizes the ANMIGA coordination, which is an association of Indigenous women from all biomes of Brazil, with knowledge, traditions, struggles, and shared experiences, mobilized to guarantee Indigenous rights and the lives of Indigenous people.

The Indigenous Women March was carried out for the first time in 2019, and it took place virtually in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The sanitary protocols of the second march reinforce all existing and recommended norms for combating the coronavirus. According to ANMIGA, the women's delegations were guided to prioritize the participation of people who had completed their immunization against COVID-19, with at least two doses of the vaccine, or with the vaccine requiring one dosage. The use of masks during the activities is mandatory and testing will be carried out upon the arrival of people at the event.

The march's health team includes Indigenous health professionals in partnership with the Brazilian Association of Collective Health (ABRASCO), the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (FIOCRUZ), the Indigenous Health Clinic from the University of Brasília (ASI/UNB), the Health Department of the Federal District with the University Hospital of Brasília (HUB).

Agenda

  • September 7, was dedicated to welcoming the delegations in Brasilia, with orientation and testing activities for COVID-19.
  • Today, Wednesday, September 8, the National Forum of Indigenous Women began and the entire mobilization followed the judgment as it resumed in the Supreme Court at 2 pm (GMT-3).
  • Thursday, September 9, the March of Indigenous Women will head to the STF square.
  • Friday, September 10, the working group on "Reforesting Minds" and parade mark the end of the mobilization activities.
  • All activities can be followed on the website: anmiga.org

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