30 November 2018
Dear LAB Supporter and Friend,
LAB’s new book Amazon Besieged is published on 1 December. We are launching it at a special lunchtime meeting ‘Will the Amazon Survive Bolsonaro’ within the Latin America Adelante 2018 Conference at TUC Congress House, Great Russell St, London WC1B 3LS. The meeting (in Congress Suite 1-2, Lower Ground Floor) starts at 13:10. Speakers: Sue Branford (co-author); Dan Baron, who lives and works in Marabá, Pará on the Tocantins tributary of the Amazon; and Sarah Shenker of Survival International, just back from the region.
Tickets to the event itself are free. But to reach it you need to pay entrance to the Latin America Adelante Conference (£10 waged / £8 unwaged). We can’t guarantee a place (as of now 99 out of 100 spaces are reserved). Copies of the book will be on sale at the discount price of £12.00
Amazon Besieged – by dams, soya, agribusiness and land-grabbing by Mauricio Torres and Sue Branford tells the story of the assault on the Tapajós basin and its tributary river, the Teles Pires, as Brazil’s vast soya megafarms in Mato Grosso and Pará attempt to create road, rail and river highways to ship their product to the sea, and logging and land-grabbing continue under the umbrella of this ‘development’. With Jair Bolsonaro due to become President of Brazil on 1 January, this book is extremely timely. The new government has promised to fulfil all the wishes of the Bancada Ruralista, sweeping away all constraints on deforestation, road development, hydroelectric dam projects, etc.
Sue Branford brings us up to date with the latest news. (Read more…)
Voices of Latin America – ed. Tom Gatehouse is the culmination of almost three year’s of LAB work, collecting interviews and testimony from over 70 social movement leaders and activists in 14 countries across the region. The book will be launched, on Friday 18 January 2019, at Rich Mix in Shoreditch, London, with speakers, Latin American food and music. Watch out on LAB’s and Rich Mix’s websites for details of tickets, etc.
Looking ahead to 2020, we are already starting work on Overburden: community resistance to mining in Latin America. Matt Kennard is at present travelling in Chile and Argentina, visiting communities affected by lithium, copper and gold mining and working closely with OCMAL (Observatorio de Conflictos Mineros de América Latina). Matt interviewed OCMAL director Lucio Cuenca in London in early November (Read more…)
News from the region
In Chile, the long-running conflict between Mapuche communities in the south of the country has become more acute with the murder of a young activist, Camilo Catrillanca, by the Comando Jungla special unit of Carabineros (Read more…)
No-one follows events in Brazil more closely or with such succinct analysis as LAB’s São Paulo correspondent Jan Rocha. You can read her blogs, both before and after the presidential elections, here. In the most recent post she looks at the implications of Judge Moro’s acceptance of his reward from Bolsonaro – appointment as Minister of Justice and Public Safety (Read more…). Bernardo Kucinski, author of LAB book K, was awarded the Vladimir Herzog Prize for Human Rights and Amnesty. His moving acceptance speech, at a meeting in São Paulo, is translated for LAB here. While Dan Baron, in another diary post from Marabá, Pará, writes movingly of the impact of the Bolsonaro campaign and victory on his closest friends and the young people with whom he works in Cabelo Seco. Even the poorest families are divided and many voted for Bolsonaro (Read more…)
The LAB Team