Protesters decide to vacate construction of Belo Monte


10/17/2012 11:10 pm -updated 10/17/2012 11:10 pm

Protesters decide to vacate construction of Belo Monte

Indians sign agreement with the company responsible for the works. Bordering and fishermen have established trading calendar.

The G1 PA

Dezenas de índios bloqueiam obras da hidrelétrica de Belo Monte, em protesto contra o que eles chamam de violação de seus direitos, em Vitória do Xingu perto de Altamira. (Foto: Lunae Parracho /Reuters)

About 200 Indians occupied the construction site Since October 8. (Photo: Lunae Brill /Reuters)

Protesters occupying the site of Pimental, the hydroelectric plant of Belo Monte, in Pará, have announced they will leave the place early in the morning of Thursday (18). According to indigenous leaders in the area, all groups who were camped out at the construction site since the day October 8 were heard and set a calendar of meetings and actions together with representatives of North Energy, a company responsible for the construction of Belo Monte facility.

In the evaluation of leaders, however, the agreement signed on Wednesday (17) does not represent significant progress in negotiating with the company. “We would succeed if the deployment of the works took place within the deadlines defined in previous meetings, which didn’t happen,” says Jair Xipaya, Chief of one of the ethnic groups present in Belo Monte.


On Wednesday (17) the conciliation meeting discussed the possible impacts of the hydroelectric installation from local communities such as Riverside, fishermen, pilots of boats and farmers, in addition to negotiate three remaining items of the list of demands of the Indians: the installation of airstrips for small planes, the construction of towers, and telephone you to perform maintenance on equipment such as electric power generators in villages.

“The company has undertaken to meet those requests in a minimum period of 15 days, when it should happen the technical visits in the villages. The commencement of early work should happen in 30 days and they are expected to be completed in five years, “said Chief Jair Xipaya.

Last Tuesday (16) in a meeting with indigenous leaders to Norte Energia company had already undertaken to meet other demands such as the construction of health clinics and schools in villages and work in partnership with other agencies in the defence and demarcation of indigenous lands.

Índios reúnem com consórcio de Belo Monte sobre liberação das obras (Foto: Reprodução/TV Liberal)

The Indians had already banned works and participated in meetings. (Photo: Reproduction/Liberal TV)

Groups negotiate tradeoffs The lawyer providing legal advice to indigenous people and communities affected by the construction of the dam, Maíra Irigaray, reported that the biggest advancement in hearing held on Wednesday was the beginning of negotiation with other groups who feel the impact of the Belo Monte hydroelectric plant.

“From the point of view of this expansion of communities and groups heard and involved in the negotiation for advancement, but as regards the demands there’s really no novelty. We talked about the rights and wishes of constraints already discussed and fixed at previous meetings. In this sense, it is even a step backwards “, considers the lawyer.

She says that fishermen and people working with the transport of passengers in the Xingu River region complain the effects already senses during the realisation of the works and the fact that these impacts will not be recognized in the deployment project.

“Fishermen have that withdrew their weekly 300 pounds of fish from the river and now cannot fish for more than 150 pounds. Who works with the boats do not know how it will work and when it will be available the transposition of rio. These impacts that are already happening were not provided between the agreements set out earlier, “explains Alison Irigaray.

The survey assesses the impacts of the plant According to the lawyer, on November 7 will be held a survey in the area of the Belo Monte dam to assess the existence of impacts to other groups in addition to the indigenous. The action must rely on the presence of the State public defender’s Office, Federal prosecutors, the communities and the North.

“Depending on the conclusions of this visit, they undertook to evaluate the existence of impacts and discuss the possibility of paying compensation to farmers, fishermen and coastal vessels pilots that live in the area,” he says.

No one from the North Energy company was found for comment. video on the link


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