Statement by Indigenous Leader on Occupation of the Belo Monte Pimental Dam site

Brent Millikan
Indigenous protestors at Pimental coffer dam, Belo Monte dam site,
Indigenous protestors at Pimental coffer dam, Belo Monte Dam site,
Photo by: Rafael Salazar

Statement by Mukuku Xikrin, indigenous spokesperson on Day 10 of the occupation of Pimental coffer dam, Belo Monte

"Today we are in day 10 of the occupation.We had the meeting on Thursday with Norte Energia but did not reach any agreement. Construction on the coffer dam and in the work camp is still paralyzed. The Xikrin, the Arara and the Juruna of the Big Bend are still occupying the site. Many more of our relatives are asking for rides to get here. For this reason we are calling for support, for more resources to arrive as soon as possible to allow us to bring more of our people to join the occupation.  

Today there are more our relatives arriving, the Parakana people are on their way to the occupation in the next few hours.

It was important for us to organize this action ourselves, the indigenous people of here without any help from white people because later we did not want the government or the company to say that it was the white people who put this idea in the indigenous people’s head. For this reason, we did not want or need the help of anyone from the outside and we did it. Now we have taken the initiative we ask for outside support so we can continue the occupation.

At the meeting with Norte Energia we reached an agreement with the president where he said he would convey to all that work is stopped in the area of the coffer dam but then the company did not keep its word. Yesterday in a few parts of the coffer dam they were continuing to work. Our people confronted the workers and shut them down and now all work is once again paralyzed."

Saturday June 30, 2012

Translated from an interview in Portuguese recorded by Atossa Soltani, Amazon Watch

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