Brazil Tribal Lands Facing New Threat
Ten years ago, the Macuxi people won a legal battle to expel rice planters from their homeland in northern Brazil. Now, their control over ancestral lands is under attack, this time from Brazil's new president, Jair Bolsonaro.
The 1.7 million hectares of grassland lies along the border with Venezuela and Guyana. The area is called Raposa Serra do Sol. It is home to 25,000 native people, many of whom raise cattle.
But the land is considered highly desirable by farmers and miners. They believe it is rich in minerals such as gold, diamonds, copper and niobium. Niobium is a metal used to strengthen steel that Bolsonaro considers "strategic."
Chief Aldenir Lima is the leader of the 70 Macuxi communities in Raposa Serra do Sol. He told the Reuters news agency, "In the fight for our land rights, 21 of us died. Since then, we recovered what we had lost and today, the farmers' rice plantations have been replaced by our cattle..."
But that could change if Bolsonaro follows through on his promise to reexamine the area's borders. He wants to overturn a ban on industrial farming and mining on indigenous lands.
Bolsonaro's first move after becoming president in January was to put indigenous land decisions under Brazil's Ministry of Agriculture. That government office is under the control of farm industry representatives who want to open up new areas to extensive farming.
The Macuxi fear the return of illegal gold miners and hunters on their lands.
Community leader Tereza Pereira de Souza told Reuters, "I want to ask the new president, Jair Bolsonaro, to respect indigenous people and our constitutional rights."
She added: "It took us 30 years to get our land borders legally recognized and registered."
Brazil's 900,000 indigenous people make up less than 1 percent of the population. They live on areas of land that make up 13 percent of Brazil.
Any attempt to change the reservation's legal standing would likely face opposition from the Supreme Court. Brazil's 1988 Constitution protects indigenous land rights.
Some experts warn that removing that protection would destroy the traditions and languages of the Macuxi and four other tribes in the area.
Martinho de Souza is a Macuxi spiritual leader. He said, "Nature is our life, our blood and our spirit...we were born on this land, we live here and we will die here."
I'm Jonathan Evans.
1.legal battle 官司
They've been engaged in a legal battle with the Council for several months.
2.make up 组成；编造；化妆
I think it's very unkind of you to make up stories about him.
3.Since then 自那以后
Since then he has been drawing a pension.
4.be under attack 遭到攻击
The army has come under attack by separatists.
5.That government office is under the control of farm industry representatives who want to open up new areas to extensive farming.
under the control of 受...控制
Campus is only a phrase of our growth, and is under control of ourselves.
The Libyan military dropped more bombs on towns that are under control of anti-government rebels.
6.That government office is under the control of farm industry representatives who want to open up new areas to extensive farming.
open up 开发；打开
The Chinese team had opened up a lead of more than two minutes.
Lorna found that people were willing to open up to her.
十年前，马库西人打赢了一场官司，将种植水稻的人驱逐出他们位于巴西北部的家园 。如今，他们对祖传土地的控制权受到了威胁，这次的对手是巴西新总统雅伊尔·博尔索纳罗（Jair Bolsonaro） 。
这片170万公顷的草原位于委内瑞拉和圭亚那边境 。该地区被称为Raposa Serra do Sol，这里是25000名当地居民的家园，其中很多人以养牛为业 。
但是这片土地令农民和矿工心驰神往 。他们认为这里富含黄金、钻石、铜和铌等矿产 。铌是一种用于强化钢铁的金属，博尔索纳罗认为铌是“战略性资产” 。
利马酋长是Raposa Serra do Sol70个马库西社区的领袖，他告诉路透社：“在争取土地权利的斗争中，我们有21人丧生 。从那时起，我们才收回了失去的一切，今天，那些农民的稻田上放养的是我们的牛……” 。
但如果博尔索纳罗履行他重新审视该地区边界的承诺，这种情况可能会改变 。他想推翻禁止在原住民土地进行工业耕作和采矿的禁令 。
1月份就任巴西总统的博尔索纳罗第一项举措是将原住民的土地决定权交给巴西农业部 。该政府办公室由农业产业代表控制，他们希望开辟新区域，进行大规模的农业生产 。
社区领袖Tereza Pereira de Souza告诉路透社，“我恳请新总统博尔索纳罗尊重原住民以及我们的宪法权利 。”
巴西的90万原住民占总人口的不到1% 。而他们生活的地区却占巴西国土面积的13% 。
任何试图改变居留地法律地位的尝试都可能面临最高法院的反对 。巴西1988年的宪法保护原住民的土地权利 。
Martinho de Souza是马库西人的精神领袖 。他说：“大自然是我们的生命、血脉和精神……我们生于此，居于此，亦将葬于此 。”