| ” target=”_blank”>Belo Monte Dam construction site was occupied by 400 indigenous people, fishermen and riverine community members who oppose the project due to its severe environmental impacts and human rights violations. The occupation was a collective decision from 700 representatives from local communities who attended a seminar against the Belo Monte Dam held this week in Altamira, and proved an important step forward in the continuing struggle to halt the project.
Protesters notified the Brazilian government about the occupation through letters and direct contact. The groups said in a statement: "In the face of the Brazilian government's intransigence to dialogue and the continuing disrespect, we occupied the Belo Monte construction site and blocked the Transamazon highway. We demand a definitive cancellation of the Belo Monte Dam."
The unprecedented occupation of the Belo Monte construction site was a direct result of an autonomous and sovereign decision by indigenous people and fishermen from the Xingu River basin and is considered the landmark of a new alliance in the struggle against the Belo Monte Dam. The mutual recognition and partnerships sealed this week among the segments that will suffer the most with the destruction of the Xingu River marks a new, stronger level of the fight against Belo Monte. Such unprecedented partnership between indigenous people and fishermen shows that the people from Xingu are united to defend the river, nature and their traditional way of life.
Our resistance against this destructive project called Belo Monte remains unshakeable. The occupation has sent a clear message to President Dilma Rousseff's administration that the fight for the Xingu is more alive than ever. If the Brazilian government continues to insist on violating our rights, other resistance actions shall come.
Coordenação das Organizações Indígenas da Amazônia Brasileira – COIAB
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