Munduruku Reclaim Funerary Urns Itig’a
SALSA stands in solidarity with a group of 70 Munduruku who, on December 25 2019, peacefully reclaimed 12 Itig’a (funerary urns of their ancestors) that had been held at the Alta Floresta Museum of Natural History in Mato Grosso, Brazil. These remains had been excavated without Munduruku consent as a result of the construction of the Teles Pires Hydroelectric Dam (opened in 2016). We applaud and support this action, and find that the actions of the Brazilian state and the construction company left the Mundruku with no other option than to reclaim the remains of their ancestors.
In light of the possibility that local officials may move to prosecute the Munduruku for their actions, SALSA has endorsed this petition (see versions in Portuguese, Spanish, and English). This document provides the historical, cultural, and political context in which the Munduruku’s actions should be understood. While we believe firmly in the rule of law, we call upon the Brazilian state to respect and enforce its own laws regarding the rights of indigenous peoples to free, prior, and informed consent regarding projects that might effect them. SALSA joins its voice to those of other organizations and individuals who stand with the Mundruku and all the traditional communities of the Amazon who are working fearlessly to defend their rights and homelands.
See webpage of Movimento Ipereg Ayu to learn more about this developing story.
Photograph: Rosamaria Loures.
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