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European Parliament Resolution on the situation of the Guaraní Kaiowá peoples in Brazil

On the 24th of November 2016, the European Parliament Adopted the resolution on the situation of the Guaraní Kaiowá in the Brazilian State of Mato Grosso do Sul (2016/2991 (RSP)). The parliament convened to express their deep concern over the proposed amendments to Brazils 1988 constitution as it threatens indigenous peoples rights to their ancestral territory. The parliament also addressed the violence against indigenous peoples, specifically referencing the SESAI official data which reports 400 murders of indigenous peoples belonging to Guarani Kaiowa, 14 of which where leaders. Through its resolution, the European Parliament reminds Brazil of their responsibility to protect international human rights particularly the rights of indigenous peoples, i.e. the Guarani Kaiowa.

This resolution points to several rights promoted by the Peasant Declaration:

Rights to Life, Liberty, Physical and Personal Security

The European Parliament’s condemnation of the violence perpetrated against the Kaiowá peoples reaffirms the Brazilians government obligation to assure the rights to life and liberty of the Kaiowá peoples (art 7(1)). Furthermore, the resolution acknowledges the constitutional right of indigenous peoples to their ancestral land and that the threat of dispossession ensues corporate control of land and resources resulting in increased anti-indigenous interests (art 7(4b)).

2016:2991 RSPArt 7(2) Peasants and other people working in rural areas shall not be subjected to arbitrary arrest or detention, to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

-Art 7(4b) States shall provide effective mechanisms for prevention of, and redress for any action which has the aim or effect of dispossessing them of their lands, territories or resources, or depriving them of their means of subsistence,

Freedom of Thought Opinion and Expression

The resolution also condemns the violent retaliation to the peaceful protests the Kaiowá peoples engaged in (peaceful assembly art 10(1),(3).

-Art 10(1) Peasants and other people working in rural areas have the rights to freedom of thought, conscience, religion, opinion, expression and peaceful assembly.[1] They have the right to express their opinion, in accordance with traditions and culture, including through claims, petitions and mobilizations, at the local, regional, national and international levels

– Art 10(3) Peasants and other people working in rural areas have the right, individually and collectively, to participate in peaceful activities against violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms. States shall take all necessary measures to ensure the protection by the competent authorities of everyone, individually and in association with others, against any violence, threats, retaliation, de facto or de jure adverse discrimination, pressure or any other arbitrary action as a consequence of his or her legitimate exercise of the rights referred to in the present Declaration.