Friday

These are the Waiapi, an ancient tribe living in Brazil's Amazon rainforest but now fearing invasion by international mining companies.

Leading AFP reporters to a tiny settlement of palm-thatched huts hidden in foliage, the tribesmen streaked in red and black dye vow to defend their territory. They brandish six-foot (two-meter) bows and arrows to reinforce the point.

"We'll keep fighting," says Tapayona Waiapi, 36, in the settlement called Pinoty. "When the companies come we'll keep resisting. If the Brazilian government sends soldiers to kill people, we'll keep resisting until the last of us is dead."

The Waiapi indigenous reserve is in pristine rainforest near the eastern end of the Amazon river. It is part of a much larger conservation zone called Renca, covering an area the size of Switzerland.

Surrounded by rivers and towering trees, the tribe operates almost entirely according to its own laws, with a way of life at times closer to the Stone Age than the 21st century.

Yet modern Brazil is barely a few hours' drive away.


And now the center-right government is pushing to open Renca to international mining companies who covet the rich deposits of gold and other metals hidden under the sea of green.

In August, President Michel Temer abruptly ended mining restrictions in swaths of Renca, sparking an outcry from environmentalists and celebrity campaigners like Leonardo DiCaprio.

Temer backtracked in September. However, the Waiapi, who were nearly wiped out by disease after being discovered by outsiders in the 1970s, remain terrified.

The rainforest, says 35-year-old Moi Waiapi, another inhabitant of Pinoty, "is the foundation for our survival."
Source

Responses to "Amazon Tribe prepares to defend itself against invading mining companies. "

  1. Anonymous says:

    It is YOUR LAND and it IS YOUR RIGHT TO DEFEND IT AS YOU SEE FIT!!

  2. I see private mining going on in the Loreto area of the Peruvian Amazon the last 2 years..The Yagua were not happy about that

  3. Omnaka says:

    May the Greatest Spirit Protect you and your lands and way of life! Bless all of you.

  4. Unknown says:

    Yes defend your land ๐Ÿขand your lifestyle with honour✌I'am supporter ๐Ÿ

  5. Anonymous says:

    These people need real weapons. The system understands nothing, sees nothing and cares for nothing, but the people who work for it can be killed.

  6. They are doing the right thing

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