Listen to this article Lula Of Brazil Acknowledges The Establishment Of Six Additional Indigenous Reserves
Brazil’s President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has issued a decree establishing six new indigenous reserves, covering approximately 620,000 hectares of land, including a vast area of the Amazon rainforest. The move bans mining and restricts commercial farming within the reserves. Indigenous leaders have welcomed the decision, but noted the need for further protection of indigenous territories.
Lula Reverses Bolsonaro’s Policies
Lula, who took office in January 2023, has vowed to reverse the policies of his far-right predecessor Jair Bolsonaro, who advocated for mining in indigenous territories. In a gathering of indigenous people from across the country in Brasília, Lula signed the demarcation decree on Friday, the final day of the event, and pledged to legalize all indigenous lands during his term.
Exclusive Use of Natural Resources
The newly established reserves are located in central Brazil, as well as the country’s north-east and south. Indigenous people within the reserves have exclusive rights to use natural resources, and mining is strictly prohibited. The presidential decree also imposes tighter regulations on commercial farming and logging activities.
Indigenous Leaders’ Response
While the indigenous leaders have praised Lula’s decision, they have also pointed out that his government had promised to recognize 14 new territories. The indigenous territories have been facing increasing deforestation in recent years, which makes the Amazon rainforest a crucial buffer in the global fight against climate change.
During his time in office, Bolsonaro made it his mission to promote economic development in the Amazon by advocating for mining in indigenous territories. He argued that Brazil could build more of its own potassium reserves by mining in these territories. However, this argument has been disputed by some experts.
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