President Jair Bolsonaro (no party) used a “fake news” to defend the approval by the Federal Supreme Court (STF) of the so-called “time frame”, a legal thesis that restricts the demarcation of indigenous lands.
In an interview with Rede Fonte de Comunicação, from Goiás, the president stated that, should the Court decide in favor of the indigenous people, an area “the size of the southern region” would be demarcated for the exclusive use of native peoples.
“[A consequência da rejeição ao ‘marco temporal’ seria] an area of indigenous reserve equivalent to Paraná, Santa Catarina and Rio Grande do Sul. It will affect agribusiness in full,” declared Bolsonaro.
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The statement was classified as a “fallacy” by the lawyer of the Instituto Socioambiental (ISA), Juliana de Paula. According to her, the demarcated indigenous lands, in the process of demarcation and judicialized, are equivalent to 13.8% of the national territory, a rate lower than the world average of 15%.
“It is completely impossible to arrive at Bolsonaro’s lying number. Numbers are fabricated without minimal proof to justify a ‘time frame’ that will, in fact, prevent the completion of the ongoing demarcations and which are already included in this 13.8% “, said Juliana.
According to the lawyer, the remaining demands for demarcation are small outside the Amazon. In Rio Grande do Sul, for example, indigenous lands are equivalent to 0.4% of the state’s area.
The STF’s delay in putting a “shovel of lime” on the subject, which has dragged on since October 2020 in the Court, has given rise to the circulation of a series of false news, by those who seek to manipulate public opinion.
“The purpose is clear: to create a climate of commotion due to the supposed unfeasibility of agribusiness in case the ‘time frame’ is rejected,” said the lawyer.
Isn’t agro tech?
In the live interview, Bolsonaro also suggested that new demarcations could impact urban centers with food shortages and harm the flow of agricultural production.
“I think the Supreme should not even be discussing this [tese do “marco temporal”]. Because simply by killing the countryside, it suffocates cities”, he argued.
In the camp called “Luta pela Vida”, the largest indigenous mobilization in the country that continues this week after gathering more than 6,000 people in Brasília (DF), Bolsonaro’s statements to Goiás radio sounded like yet another provocation by the president.
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“Agriculture is monoculture. Whose food is this? Who is eating soy? Who are the miles of sugarcane plantations that feed?”, countered Marcos Subaru, political advisor for the Articulation of Indigenous Peoples of Brazil (Apib), which coordinates the mobilization in the federal capital.
“The president says that there will be a shortage of food if the ‘time frame’ does not pass. So whose fault is it? Of the indigenous people. He proposes a civil war and pits the population against the indigenous people”, denounced Subaru.
For Juliana de Paula, from ISA, agribusiness has more than enough land. Among the top nine states that produce commodities agricultural, in seven the percentage of the territory occupied by ILs does not exceed 1%.
“If the agro is not able to improve with the amount of land still available, it will have to stop saying it is tech and assume its self-failure,” criticized the lawyer.
“Timeframe inverts history”
Last week, Bolsonaro had already classified the protesters against the thesis of the “time frame” as “poor things” and “maneuvering mass”. He also associated the peaceful protests “with those who censor, arrest and attack the defenders of the Federal Constitution”.
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About a thousand representatives of 176 indigenous peoples who met in the federal capital decided to remain in the city, on watch, until at least Wednesday (1st), when the STF session should take place that will bring an outcome to the discussion of the “milestone temporal”.
The legal thesis defended by ruralists provides that territories can only be demarcated if indigenous peoples are able to prove that they were occupying the area previously or on the exact date of the promulgation of the Federal Constitution, on October 5, 1988, or if a conflict for possession of the Earth.
“The ‘timeframe’ inverts real history. It places the colonizer as the first occupant of the land and the indigenous as an immigrant, giving possession to the land grabbers, the landlords and the landlords”, analyzes the political advisor at Apib.
Once judged, the action will have general repercussion, that is, it may be used as a basis for court decisions in similar cases, defining the future of thousands of Brazilian indigenous people.
Edition: Anelize Moreira