Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

José Pedro Martins, "SOS Amazon," Latinamerica Press, February 19, 2009.

One of the most lasting images of the World Social Forum in Belém, Brazil was the human banner made by indigenous leaders, who used their bodies to spell out a bird´s eye message of “SOS Amazon” in Portuguese, to draw attention to the fragile region.

The human banner was organized by the Coordinating Group of Indigenous Organizations of the Brazilian Amazon, one of the major groups that participated in the forum, campaigning for indigenous rights, particularly in the South American jungle, where various economically-driven projects are having grave reverberations on native peoples.

  Between 2003 and 2007, there were 271 killings of indigenous peoples throughout Brazil, according to figures from the Indigenous Missionary Council, a branch of the National Conference of Brazilian Bishops.

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