Brazil: Repudiation to the initiative of the Rio Grande do Sul State Higher Council of Public Prosecutions against MST


June 28, 2008

Repudiation to the Rio Grande do Sul State Higher Council of Public Prosecutionss initiative against MST

Madame Yeda Crusius, M.D. State Governor of Rio Grande do Sul

C / C Procurador Geral da Justica Dr. Mauro Renner

The International Alliance of Inhabitants, a global network for the right to housing and city without boundaries, we, hereby express to you our most vehement condemnation excellence to the initiative of General Staff of the Military Brigade do RS – 2 PM. At the initiative of the Higher Council of Public Prosecutions do Estado de Rio Grande do Sul, and the initiative of the Federal Public Ministry, for those indicated below.

On September 20, 2007 the Subcommander General of WB Cel. QOEM – Paulo Roberto Rodrigues Mendes, sent the report n. 1124-100-PM2-2007 whose preparation had been determined by him, to the commander of the Military Brigade.The report suggested that they should take all possible actions to prevent the three MST columns that were walking towards the the Municipality of Coqueiros do Sul to meet.

The report composed a secret investigation about the MST, their leaderships, the number of people in it and their performance in Rio Grande do Sul. The report was sent to the Attorney General of the State of RS and the Federal Public Prosecutor.

In that report, the military of Rio Grande do Sul characterizes the MST and Via Campesina as movements that no longer perform acts that are characteristic of the social demands, instead they characterized them as criminal.

In its conclusion the report condemns paradigms that defend ideals that think that actions of the social movements should not be considered as crimes, instead they should be considered a legitimate way of manifestation. The research was also directed towards the performance of regional deputies, mayors, members of the National Institute of Colonization and Agrarian Reform (INCRA) and assumptions foreigners.

In light of this action by the Military Brigade, the Ministerio Publico State joined with a GPA preventing the columns of MST to join four municipalities of the district of Carazinho in the RS, and was perpetrated by several lawsuits to try to withdraw girls and boys of families who were demonstrating.

The initiatives made by the Military Brigade have not occurred in Brazil since the end of the Brazilian military dictatorship, so that to infringe against the Federal Constitution of 1988 that banned military policemen to act in criminal investigations, social movements and parties politicians. The article 144 of the Federal Constitution provides that military police are responsible for the ostensive police and preservation of public order. The Military Brigade invaded the powers of the Civilian Police and the Federal Police.

On the day 3/12/07, the Supreme Council of the General Attorney approved the report prepared by the developer Thums Gilberto (process N. 16315-09-00/07-9) on the administrative procedure applied by the Portaria 01/2007.

The group of researchers aimed to seek information about the MST.
The final report of the group of researchers deserves rejection of the whole society. One of the decisions taken by the Public Prosecutor’s Office was in “(…) sense to appoint a team of Promoters of Justice to promote public civil action with a view to the dissolution of the MST and the declaration of its illegality (…)

As if it were not sufficient attempt to outlaw the MST, the Public Prosecutor’s Office decided “(…) by the intervention in schools with the MST to take measures that will be necessary for adaptation to the legal fold, as it Concerning the educational aspect and the structure of external influence MST.. “

The decision of Public Prosecutions attacked the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, especially in Article 22, No 1. This pact was recognized by the Brazilian Government through Decree No 592 of July 6, 1992.
The decision also attacks the Federal Constitution. The article 5, subsection XVII, said that “is full freedom of association with lawful purposes, closed to the paramilitary in nature.”

The day March 11, 2008, the Federal Prosecutor claimed eight alleged members of the MST “INTEGRATE groupings that were aimed at changing the rule of law, order in force in Brazil,” the practice of crimes by political grievance, crimes articulated in the National Security Act of the deceased Brazilian dictatorship, when referring in its complaint that the MST camps are a “parallel state” and that acts against national security would be receiving support from foreign organizations such as Via Campesina, The FARC – Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, as well as foreigners who would be in charge of military training.

The thesis that appeared constantly in the complaint were made by the owner of the Hacienda War, a member of the breeders’ organization FARSUL of 2005, and ratified by the Colonel of the Military Brigade Valdir Cerutti Reis, a member of the Brazilian military dictatorship, who served as an agent infiltrated for a two-year period in the Camp Natalino, using the alias Toninho. Their task was to try to convince the families to leave the camping movement and accept parcels of land offered by the military dictatorship in Lucas do Rio Vede, in Mato Grosso.

The action of the Ministerio Publico Federal are contrary to the conclusions of the judicial inquiry conducted by the Federal Police who investigated the MST throughout the year 2007, and concluded that there are no links MST with the FARC, or the presence of foreigners who are conducting training of guerrilla movement in the camps, as well as the fact that there are no crimes practiced against national security.

The MST has become one of the most important social movements in our history, especially since they have opted for a non-violence approach. For the above stated, the decision of the Supreme Council of Public Prosecutions receive our most vehement condemnation, for his General Staff of the Military Brigade and the decision by the Federal Prosecutor.

We declare our solidarity and support for the struggle of MST.

Cesare Ottolini
Coordinator AIH

Pedro Franco
Coordinator of the Campaign Zero Evictions
Regional AIH for Latin America and the Caribbean

To read the official lettre send to brasilians authorities by HIC, just clik here.