Global drive in support of Brazil's threatened Awa tribe

Dec 10, 2012
Protestors march to the United Nations General Assembly Building in New York in recognition of International Human Rights Day. A London-based rights group used the day to coordinate a global drive in support of the Awa of the Brazilian Amazon, describing them as "Earth's most threatened tribe".

A London-based rights group used Human Rights Day Monday to coordinate a global drive in support of the Awa of the Brazilian Amazon, describing them as "Earth's most threatened tribe".

Survival International, a leading advocate for ' rights worldwide, sponsored protests in London, Madrid, Paris, Milan, Berlin, The Hague and San Francisco to pressure Brazil to honor its pledge to remove loggers, ranchers and settlers from demarcated Awa territories.

In letters to Brazilian diplomatic missions in those cities, Survival supporters warned that "if the invasion and destruction are not halted now, we believe that the Awa have little chance of surviving," the group said.

Survival Director Stephen Corry urged Brasilia to "remove all invaders from the Awa indigenous territory as a matter of urgency, and put in place a permanent land protection plan which will enable them to live in peace and security on their land."

Last April, Survival launched a campaign spearheaded by Britain's Oscar-winning actor Colin Firth to focus world attention on the plight of the Awa, warning they were threatened with "genocide" and "extinction."

The campaign also aimed to persuade Brazilian Justice Minister Jose Eduardo Cardozo to send in federal police to evict loggers, ranchers and settlers from Awa lands.

According to , there are roughly 360 Awa who have been contacted by outsiders, many of them survivors of brutal massacres, along with another 100 believed to be hiding in the rapidly-shrinking forest.

Brazil's National Indian Foundation (FUNAI) FUNAI estimates that there are 77 isolated indigenous tribes scattered across the Amazon. Only 30 such groups have been located.

Indigenous peoples represent less than one percent of Brazil's 192 million people and occupy 12 percent of the national territory, mainly in the Amazon.

Explore further: Pact with devil? California farmers use oil firms' water

Related Stories

Photos released to protect endangered Amazonians

Jan 31, 2011

Brazil has allowed the release of rare photographs of Amazonian natives to bring attention to the plight of indigenous people who rights groups say are faced with possible extinction.

Recommended for you

Gimmicks and technology: California learns to save water

Jul 03, 2015

Billboards and TV commercials, living room visits, guess-your-water-use booths, and awards for water stinginess—a wealthy swath of Orange County that once had one of the worst records for water conservation ...

Cities, regions call for 'robust' world climate pact

Jul 03, 2015

Thousands of cities, provinces and states from around the world urged national governments on Thursday to deliver a "robust, binding, equitable and universal" planet-saving climate pact in December.

Will climate change put mussels off the menu?

Jul 03, 2015

Climate change models predict that sea temperatures will rise significantly, including in the tropics. In these areas, rainfall is also predicted to increase, reducing the salt concentration of the surface ...

As nations dither, cities pick up climate slack

Jul 02, 2015

Their national governments hamstrung by domestic politics, stretched budgets and diplomatic inertia, many cities and provinces have taken a leading role—driven by necessity—in efforts to arrest galloping ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.