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anonymous-remailer at anonymous-remailer at
Sun Apr 21 21:43:24 MDT 1996

Police slay peasants: "It's Time for the Landless to die"

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil (AP)April 20, 1996
Even given the bloody history of if the
eastern Amazon rain forest, the violence
was shocking. State police with rifles and
machine guns opened fired on hundreds of
peasants demanding land, killing at least
22 of them.
  Dozens more in attack late Wednesday in
Eldorodo do Carjas, a remote village on
the state of Para, 1,250 miles NW of Rio.
One policeman was killed and six were
wounded in the confrontation.
"One (policeman) said, "It's time for
the landless to die,' " Orlando Galvino
said by telephone from Maraba, abot 80
miles from the scene of the attack.
  Galvino is a member of the Landless
Peasants Movement, which organized a
series of demonstrations that began April
10 to protest, Brazil's widely unequal
distribution of land. 20% of Brazilians
own 88% of the land, while the poorest
40% hold just 1%.
  This Wednesday, some 2,000 peasants
gathered in S. Para for a march to
Maraba, but they only made it as far as
Eldorado do Carajas.
  Survivors said state authorities had
promised to send buses and food for the
families. When the aid failed to come,
the peasants blocked the road. Two state
police battalions arrived late in the
day. What happened next is in dispute.
  According to police, the officers tried to
negotiate with the protesters, but were
pelted with rocks and shot at.
  "We came to talk and open the road
and they started shooting," said Lt. Furado
via telephone. " Wejust returned their fire."
  Survivors claim the officers didn't say a
  "They didn't even try to negotiate," said
Galvino. "They came off the trucks shooting
tear gas and firing into the air, then lowered
their sites."
  The peasants armed with sticks, stones and
handguns, were quickly cut down or scattered in
panic. Human Rights activist contend that some
of the victims were were killed execution-style.

End Of Report

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