Brazilian Prosecutors Appeal Judge’s Order, Refuse to Drop Criminal Charges Against Glenn Greenwald – Activist Post


06-03-20 08:41:00,

By Freedom of the Press Foundation

In a troubling development for press freedom, Brazilian authorities have appealed a federal judge’s ruling that rejected criminal charges against Intercept Brasil founding editor Glenn Greenwald. The charges stem from that outlet’s investigative series documenting corruption involving high ranking prosecutors and Sergio Moro, the Justice Minister in President Jair Bolsonaro’s right-wing administration.

Since the Intercept Brazil started publishing its investigation last year, Greenwald, his family, and his colleagues have been met with a campaign of harassment and intimidation, culminating in January’s baseless and retaliatory charges. The attempt to prosecute Greenwald for his reporting has been roundly condemned by dozens of press freedom organizations in the world.

A federal judge blocked the charges last month, citing a sweeping opinion by a Brazilian Supreme Court judge that barred federal prosecutors from further investigation into Greenwald for his journalism. Despite the clarity of that order, and the subsequent judicial finding that it applies in this case, prosecutors nevertheless appear to be attempting to push forward with the politically motivated charges.

Freedom of the Press Foundation executive director Trevor Timm released this statement:

When Brazil’s prosecutors first brought these charges, they were universally denounced for what they were: a baseless attempt to intimidate journalists engaged in a powerful and substantive corruption investigation. With this appeal, Brazil’s Public Ministry has doubled down in its shameful attempt to criminalize journalism.

Glenn Greenwald has fought for journalistic freedom throughout his entire career, including as a founding member of Freedom of the Press Foundation. We have no doubt he will continue to fight these charges with his characteristic integrity and dedication. Meanwhile, the damage caused by this continued official disregard for basic functions of the press is profound, and should not be tolerated.

Freedom of the Press Foundation will have more on this case as it develops.


Hat tip: Janet Phelan

Photo by Martin Dee, Allard Prize, used under CC BY-SA 4.0

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Brazilian Government Wants to Destroy the Culture of Native Peoples – Global Research


10-02-20 09:17:00,

Recently, Brazilian government appointed Ricardo Lopes Dias to the position of coordinator of isolated peoples at the National Indian Foundation (Fundação Nacional do Índio – FUNAI). The act was made possible by a small but substantial change in the Foundation’s bylaws, which created the possibility for people who are not career servants to assume commissioned positions of command. The change came shortly before the appointment, indicating that Ricardo Dias’ specific appointment was the reason for the reform.

The biggest problem involving Ricardo Dias, however, is another: the new coordinator is a former evangelical missionary, having already worked for more than a decade in the evangelization of indigenous peoples, when he was then a member of the New Tribes of Brazil Mission, an organization born in the USA whose objective is to spread Protestantism among Brazilian indigenous peoples.

Ricardo Dias is an PhD anthropologist and Protestant theologian. The controversies surrounding his appointment – in addition to the administrative issue – revolve around a central point: the possibility, ignited by his past, of the coordinator to use his position to promote the forced “evangelization” of isolated peoples, reviving a policy towards the indigenous peoples that Brazil has sought to abandon for decades.

Hundreds of women from several indigenous tribes march during their second day of protests, in Brasilia, Brazil, 13 August 2019, to demand Jair Bolosnaro’s far-right Government to set further health care providers at their territories, which they consider ‘threatened’ under his policies. The women, who have arrived from several territories of the country, will join the traditional farmers march tomorrow.  EPA/JOEDSON ALVES

Since the end of the military dictatorship, Brazil has tried to overcome the notion of “social integration” of isolated peoples, aiming to protect them in their traditional customs and respecting their space in the national territory. Brazil is one of the few countries in the world where it is still possible to find entire villages that have never had any contact with modern civilization, or have had it on a small scale. During the military regime, state policies aimed at these peoples sought precisely to integrate them into modernity and the consumer society. This is a concept that, after 30 years of democracy, is returning and gaining strength with the new neoliberal wave that marks the Bolsonaro’s government.

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Brazilian Official Who Fought To Protect The Amazon “Assassinated” In Front Of Family


12-09-19 07:48:00,

Authored by John Vibes via The Mind Unleashed blog,

Maxciel Pereira dos Santos, a Brazilian government official who has been working with indigenous people to preserve the Amazon rainforest for over a decade, was shot and killed in front of his family in an apparent assassination on Friday. Santos was shot twice in the head while riding a motorbike through Tabatinga, a small city located in the Amazon rainforest, along Brazil’s border with Colombia and Peru.

Santos worked for a Brazilian government agency called the National Indian Foundation (FUNAI), which is tasked with protecting the land and interests of the indigenous people. The INA, a union that represents workers for the agency, said that Santos was killed in retaliation for his work at the Vale do Javari reservation, according to the Telegraph.

Santos was the chief of environmental services at the Vale do Javari reservation for over five years, and was essentially the head of the local enforcement authority that patrolled the area to protect native tribes from violent groups of raiders that frequently attack tribes so their land can be taken for development.

INA officials said the current administration has created an atmosphere where violence against native people and their allies has been encouraged.

A statement from the INA called on Brazilian officials to demonstrate that Brazil “no longer condones violence against those who engage, under the rule of law, in the protection and promotion of indigenous rights.”

The Vale do Javari reservation has the world’s highest concentration of uncontacted peoples and is rich in natural resources, which has made it a target for a variety of illegal miners, loggers, ranchers, and poachers. Large areas of the Amazon are demarcated for the indigenous population of over a million people, but these protections are rarely respected when a tribe is living in a place that becomes a target for development.

For example, earlier this year, a group of gold miners invaded a remote Amazonian village that was inhabited by the Waiãpi tribe and killed their leader, sending the rest of the tribe to flee in terror. Sadly, this was not an isolated incident.

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Brazilian Real Plunges As Jailed Lula’s Presidential Poll Lead Increases

Brazilian Real Plunges As Jailed Lula’s Presidential Poll Lead Increases

23-08-18 06:51:00,

The political confusion and chaos around the globe grows with each passing day, and one day after Australia suffered a leadership crisis which could result in the premature exit of prime minister Turnbull, attention turns again to Brazil, where former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva – who remains in prison on a corruption conviction, and is potentially barred from standing in October’s presidential election – is enjoying a growing advantage against his opponents in the polls ahead of October’s presidential election.

According to the latest poll by Datafolha released on on Wednesday, the former president’s share of the vote has risen to 39% from 30% last month, as the local working class demand a return to a past when life seemed better (a frequent lament these days).

Former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is carried by supporters in front of the metallurgic trade union in Sao Bernardo do Campo, Brazil April 7, 2018

Lula’s lead means he now has more than double the number of his nearest challenger, far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro, who is up to 19% from 17% last month with none of the other 11 registered candidates polling in the double figures in the sample of almost 8,433 people asked who they intended to vote for in the October 7 election.

Environmentalist Marina Silva took 8%. Business favorite center-right candidate Geraldo Alckmin remained stuck in single digits with 9%, up from 7% in June. The latest figures are in line with other polling organizations that gave Lula a 37% share earlier this week.

If Lula’s name is excluded, Bolsonaro leads with 22% and Marina Silva jumps to 16%.

The 72-year-old leader of the Workers’ Party (PT) is aiming for a third term in the top job having led Brazil from 2003 to 2010. However, as discussed previously, Lula could be barred from running as he serves a 12-year sentence for corruption.

And while Brazil’s Attorney General Raquel Dodge asked the country’s top court for electoral matters to invalidate Lula’s candidacy, the United Nations Human Rights Committee ruled that he cannot be disqualified “until his appeals before the courts have been completed in fair judicial proceedings.”

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