Week of mobilization for Agrarian Reform and against the violence of big land-owners

Massimo A. Allamandola suburbanstudio at runbox.com
Fri Mar 7 22:08:33 GMT 2008

Jornada de Lutas das Mulheres Sem Terra 2008

The Rural Landless Workers' Movement (MST) has blockaded eight roads in 
the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. This action comes in response to 
the "violence and abuses" committed against 900 women two days ago.

Organized as part of a "week of mobilization for Agrarian Reform and 
against the violence of big land-owners", the women of La Via Campesina 
<http://viacampesina.org/main_en/index.php> decided to occupy a plot of 
land that was illegally acquired by the Swedish-Finnish company Stora 
Enso <http://www.storaenso.com>.

According to Via Campesina, Brazilian law states foreigners cannot own 
land that's "less than 150 kilometers off the border with other 
countries." Stora Enso's 5,200-acre tree farm lies within that boundary, 
near the Uruguayan border.

As the regional government did nothing to prevent Stora Enso from 
setting up its operation, the women decided to take action themselves. 
In turn, Stora Enso asked government to intervene and remove the 

Arresting hundreds and injuring close to fifty - the government did just 
that. Mainstream reports suggest 
<http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2008/03/05/ap4735330.html> there were no 
injuries (except to the police) however the MST say the abuses have been 
documented on CD.

Real World Radio adds 
<http://www.radiomundoreal.fm/rmr/?q=en/node/24720> that the arrested 
were then "sent to a gym where they stayed during the night "without 
food", and one of them was sent to jail, according to the MST's article. 
However, the women of La Via Campesina will continue the demonstrations 

The violent action will now be presented to the Parliament's Human 
Rights Commission, along with documents proving "the irregular situation 
of Stora Enso." //

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