Apr 02, 2019

Documentary Screening at the European Parliament discusses Amazon and its History of Resistance

European Parliament | Brussels, Belgium

2 April 2019 | 18:30 – 21:00 | Room ASP 1G2

On 2 April 2019, MEP Marisa Matias (GUE/NGL) will host the documentary screening of Empate, with the participation of the director Sérgio de Carvalho, at the European Parliament in Brussels. The film gives voice to the protagonists of the seringueiro movement in Brazil's state of Acre, during the '70s and '80s and reflects on how this historical moment still echoes today in the Amazon and in the rest of the world. The event is being organised in collaboration with the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) and Espirito Mundo ASBL.  

The event will take at a moment when indigenous peoples and the environment are under attack in Brazil. On the 1st of January 2019, President Bolsonaro issued the Provisional Measure 870, a legislative instrument that allows the president to create norms through the power of laws, that are immediately effective. With a validity of at least 60 days and up to 120 days, Bolsonaro’s decree has modified the policy domains and structure of the ministries and bodies linked to the presidency, transferring the power over the demarcation of indigenous lands from Funai (Fundação Nacional do Índio - National Indian Foundation) to the Ministry of Agriculture. In addition to stripping Funai of its intended policies, the new structure implies that future and ongoing processes of demarcation will be halted as the Ministry of Agriculture would hardly be interested in expropriating farmlands to the means of creating indigenous reserves.

Furthermore, through the same Provisional Measure Bolsonaro has included among the attributions of the Government Secretary the power to supervise and coordinate NGOs and other international organisations acting on national territory. With this power, on 14 January 2019, the Ministry of the Environment, Ricardo Salles, suspended contracts and partnerships with NGOs for the period of 90 days in order to analyse his ministry’s expenditure, further requesting information about all the public payments made to NGOs in 2018. According to several organisations, the initiative is not justified and, lacking legal backing and concrete reasons to be implemented, violates the Constitution. Finally, the initiative not only has the prospect of weakening the partnerships that support indigenous movements in Brazil, but it also threatens the actions of organizations that play an important role in defending indigenous rights to land, their culture and the environment.


Register for the event here.

Meeting point: Main entrance of the European Parliament (in front of Luxembourg Square) at 18:00.