Two new articles of A Nova Democracia

We publish these unofficial translations of articles published this week on the newspaper A Nova Democracia.

Rondônia: Gunmen assassinate peasant resident from Escurão camp

Murder occurred less than a month after attacks against Escurão camp, where more than 30 families live. Photo: AND Database

The peasant Adelmo Umbilino, resident of the Escurão camp in Rondônia, was found dead in his house on the afternoon of April 21 after having been shot by gunmen under orders from the big landlord. The denunciation is from the Brazilian Association of People’s Lawyers [Associação Brasileira dos Advogados do Povo] (Abrapo).

According to Abrapo’s denunciation on April 24th, the peasant “was found dead in his home, and marks of gunshots were found on his body”. Abrapo also denounces that the Escurão camp “has been the target of gunmen attacks since March” and that the occupied lands are “public lands appropriated by big landlords of the region”.

The murder of Adelmo occurred less than a month after an attack against the Escurão camp by gunmen and is one more serious element in the scenario of intensified repression and gunmen against the peasant struggle in the country. With the murder of Adelmo, there are four peasants murdered by gunmen in Rondonia in the first four months of 2023.

The cowardly murder of the peasant Adelmo Umbilino occurred after several alarming crimes committed by the big landlord against more than 30 peasant families who live in the Escurão camp, run by the League of Poor Peasants (LCP) [Liga dos Camponeses Pobres].

In March, paramilitaries hired by the big landlord attacked peasant families with gunfire and threats. According to a denunciation promoted by Abrapo about the case, the terrorism promoted by the gunmen attack forced the residents, among them children and elderly people, to retreat into the forest to avoid being shot. The note also states that the Rondônia Civil Police did not stop the attack, despite being aware of the case, and also arrested three peasants who denounced the crime.

Besides the threats during the attack, the peasants report that the militia members of the big landlords have been promoting intimidation and coercion during military incursions to the homes of the camp’s residents. During the raids, the gunmen threaten the peasants to abandon their land “for better or for worse.”

Four murders in four months in RO

This intensification of the big landlord terror against the Escurão camp registered last month is added to the several denunciations made at the beginning of 2023 about the increase of arrests, attacks, and murders against the masses of peasants and indigenous people who fight for land in the country. In Rondônia alone, three peasants were executed by gunmen and military police before the most recent case of Adelmo Umbilino. They were Patrick Gasparini, resident of Área Tiago Campin dos Santos, killed in the Norbrasil farm, and Rodrigo Hawerroth and Raniel Laurindo, tortured and killed by military police officers of the Special Operations Battalion (Bope) in the Tiago Campin dos Santos camp, in Nova Mutum.

All this brutal repression unleashed against peasants is part, according to the LCP, of the quest of the Rondônia biglandlords, the gunmen, the military police, and the Rondônia government to “increase repression against peasant Areas in the region” through successive crimes.

After the execution of Rodrigo Hawerroth and Raniel Laurindo, the LCP stated, regarding the alarming frequency of crimes committed against poor peasants in Rondônia, that “it is not the first time that Bope, this troop of murderers, of bandits in uniform, commits murders of peasants in this region. Always acting in a totally arbitrary and bloodthirsty way, they seek in vain to terrorize the families in an attempt to curb the peasant struggle for land in order to serve the interests of the land thieving landowners. That is how they murdered Comrades Amarildo, Amaral and Kevin in August 2021, Comrades Gedeon and Rafael, in October 2021, among other peasants”.

Despite all the terrorism promoted by the big landlords, the peasant organization stressed in a more recent note that “the peasant struggle cannot be paralyzed or contained no matter how great the repression” and that “the Agrarian Revolution is today a pressing need of all the Brazilian people against the general economic, social, political and moral crisis of a rotten system adorned with the veil of ‘democracy,’ in which government comes and goes, and only deepens, throwing millions and millions of Brazilians into misery and hunger.”

And now, we also publish another unofficial translation of an article related to the last one, and also published on the newspaper A Nova Democracia [link]:

Rondônia: Gunmen threaten camp Escurão’s families 5 days after assassination of a peasant

On 25th April’s night, gunmen under orders the big landlord threatened once again the families who live on the Escurão camp, located on rural area of Pimenta Bueno, Rondônia. An invasion happened five days after Adelmo’s assassination.

Umbilino, peasant resident of camp was found dead with marks of shots at his house. More than 30 families of camp have been constantly threatened and attacked by big landlord since March.

According to the the Brazilian Association of People’s Lawyers [Associação Brasileira de Advogados do Povo] (Abrapo), explained on 22 hours of 25th April, families denounced that “[the gunmen] have been threatening with dead to the peasant families who remains on the land.”

This new attack on peasant families of Escurão camp, lead by League of Poor Peasants (LCP) [Liga dos Camponeses Pobres], is a continuation of several threatens, hits, and also the assassination committed by the gunmen of big landlord against the peasants who struggle for the land on the region. On 21/04, the peasant Adelmo Umbilino, resident of the camp, was found dead with marks of shots at his house. Abrapo accuse private militia under orders of big landlord of committed this murder.

On the past month, peasants of Escurão camp were harassed with gun shots, fired by militias of the big landlord. Just as in the recent case, this gunmen threatened and harassed the families to force to abandon the lands.

This continuation of attacks against Escurão camp is inside a serious context of repression to the struggle for the land in the whole country, particularly in the state of Rondônia, and this is denounced by LCP as the search of the big landlord, military police of the state government to “increase repression in rural areas of region”.

The objective is stop the peasant fight, and big landlord and their militia committed in the last months, tortures, threatens, harassment and assassination against the struggling peasants. Just on the Rondônia state, four peasants were assassinated in the last four months. This is the repression of the Old State, using the military police for evictions, and imprisoning the peasant leaders. And the same time, it’s happening too, on the whole country, brutal repression against indigenous peoples, Indigenous Lands through evictions, murders, harassment and prison.

Peasant Patrick Gasparini, executed by gunmen in 2023 January. Source: Data Bank of AND

Peasant Raniel Laurindo, tortured and assassinated by Bope’s policemen in 2023 January. Source: Data Bank of AND

Peasant Rodrigo Hawerroth, tortured and assassinated by Bope’s policemen in 2023 January. Source: Data Bank of AND

Against these several crimes committed, peasant masses and indigenous people stand up more, because the need of struggle against large estate and they continue promoting actions for the whole country. Since the beginning of the year, dozens of thousands of peasants promoted protests and took lands in Bahia, São Paulo, Paraná, Pernambuco, Espírito Santo and Goiás. In a recent note, LCP said recent terror actions of large estates will not stop the peasant struggle and big landlords “don’t remain in peace, until robbed lands of poor peasants returned to their true owners, and the suffered caused and blood spread be revenged!”.

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