Brazil: LCP Denounces Criminal Attack on the Osmir Venuto Camp (Pará)

Photo: Entrance to the Camp Osmir Venuto, in Eldorado dos Carajás in the State of Pará. Credit: Peasant Resistance.

The following is an unofficial translation of a statement produced by the National Commission of the League of Poor Peasants (LCP)

We reproduce below a note issued by the National Commission of the League of Poor Peasants (LCP) where they denounce the criminal attack promoted against the Osmir Venuto Camp, in Pará.

Attack on Camp Osmir Venuto is premeditated crime, announced and covered up by the genocidal dictatorship of the generals and Bolsonaro

Around midnight on Monday, December 14, heavily armed gunmen attacked and burned several shacks at the Osmir Venuto camp, located in Eldorado dos Carajás, southern Pará.

They arrived shooting, with dozens of peasants running into the forest, including elderly companions, children, and even a disabled companion.

Cowards, they knew they wouldn’t find many peasants in the area. Dozens of families were already fighting in other land grabs in the region, as a result of the criminal leniency and malfeasance of the “authorities” “INCRA (National Institute for Colonization and Agrarian Reform), ITERPA (Institute of Land of Pará), federal and state courts” that for years on end wrapped up families, disappeared with maps, promised and “depreciated” surveys. Even the lawyers of the peasants managed to prove (in this process of endless wrapping-up, real water-drop torture) that around half of the lands of the “Complexo Surubim,” formed by several farms, were stolen and taken over by the landowner Amilcar Farid Yamim.

Even more cowardly because they started their attacks on comrades who resisted and did not accept the crumbs offered by the landowner’s managers and emissaries to leave the camp, which by the way was on DNIT’s lands, by the road.

Even more ignominious is this crime against Brazilian peasants because the attack was carried out in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has already killed almost 200,000 Brazilians, less because of the virus itself and much more because of the terrible conditions of life and health of the vast majority of our suffering population. Pandemic in which the rich became richer  and the poor poorer.

It is worth remembering: in Pará, and particularly in this region, fraud in crickets [This phrase refers to a type of fraud in which people placed documents like land deeds, obtained from specialized counterfeiting offices, in a drawer or box filled with crickets, which release a substance that turns the paper yellow, looking like old paper.] is so blatant that in real estate registries there are falsely documented areas that, together, exceed four times the area of ​​the state. As if the State of Pará had four floors!

And denouncing this criminal attack is a task for all democrats in every corner of the country. In Pará, peasants have nowhere to bring their complaints.

DECA, the Police Office Specializing in Agrarian Conflicts, was the police force that carried out the Pau D’arco Massacre, killing ten peasants inside the Fazenda Santa Lúcia (the area was being purchased by INCRA. An impasse arose on account of R$500,000 because INCRA offered R$21,000,000 and the “widow of the landowner” and his clever lawyers wanted R$21,500,000—over $4 million USD).

In Marabá, in 2007 and 2008, a public defender who heard the peasants and proved the torture in the war operation carried out by the Lula government and Governor Ana Júlia Carepa (of the Workers’ Party) (the largest ever carried out against peasants fighting for land since the times of the Araguaia Guerrilla War) against the more than 600 families that took over the slave-holding latifundium known as “Forkilha.” Well, the wife of this public defender had just given birth. They received a miniature coffin at their home. Intimidated, he asked for a transfer to Belém.

This is one of the most disputed regions in the country, where the bloodthirsty and war criminal Major Curió worked. It is the cradle of the paramilitary group, the armed wing of the latifundium, known as UDR [Democratic Association of Ruralists], which was never dismantled by Itamar, FHC [Cardoso], Lula, Dilma, and Temer, and which now has its chief Nabhan Garcia, militiaman and assassin, commanding the Secretariat of Land Affairs of Bolsonaro. Where Vale, JBS, Lula’s son, and now the soybean farmers, dispute the spoils of the very rich lands stolen from the Union and massacre the peasants.

Peasants, we say, will never stop fighting! With all this repression, with the Eldorado dos Carajás massacre, with the Pau D’arco massacre, with the Forkilha war operation, with the murder of dozens of peasants, religious people, and lawyers, such as the dear Gabriel Pimenta in 1982, here and there, until the end of so much land theft, so much exploitation, and so much injustice, the struggle for the land of peasants, indigenous, and quilombolas and affected by mining and dams will emerge with redoubled strength.

Cowards and Murderers Will Pay for Their Crimes! All Support to the Peasants of Camp Osmir Venuto!

Land for Those Who Live and Work on It!

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