MST Land Occupations Spread Throughout Brazil

In stark contrast to the snail pace of Brazil’s judiciary branch concerning agrarian reform issues, Rio de Janeiro’s Justice Department has moved with speed after Rural Landless Workers Movement families occupied Santa Rosa farm, owned by former president of the Brazilian Football Confederation Ricardo Teixeira.
Empresário está preso em situação domiciliar por corrupção e lavagem de dinheiro - Créditos: MST

Early Tuesday morning, some 300 families participating in the MST’s National Struggle for Agrarian Reform occupied Teixeira’s property, according to the group’s website.

Judge Anna Luiza Campos Lopes Soares of Pirai District in the interior of the state of Rio de Janeiro, emitted an eviction order later in the day, stipulating that MST members had just three hours to abandon Santa Rosa farm.

Police have converged around the property, which, according to the MST, signals an imminent, forced removal.

The MST released a public statement addressing the Santa Rosa farm occupation. It reads, in part that despite the judicial branch’s dictate which calls for taking precautionary measures when “children and elderly people” are gathered collectively, the state has preferred to pursue a policy of land reintegration.

It also noted that the decision was made to occupy the property because it was the locale of money laundering associated with “sale contracts for a soccer match played by Brazil’s national team in 2008.”

In 2012, embroiled in a series of corruption accusations, including receiving bribes and practicing nepotism while president of CBF, Teixeira resigned as head of Brazil’s highest soccer governing body.

As part of its National Struggle for Agrarian Reform, the MST organized at least 10 simultaneous farmland occupations throughout Brazil. The movement also opposes land reform that eases restrictions on foreigners to own land in Brazil at the expense of poor families in irregular settlements.
Ocupação faz parte da Jornada Nacional de Lutas organizada pelo MST em todo país nesta terça-feira (25) - Créditos: Jornal GGNOne of the occupied farms, Esmeralda, located between the cities of Lucianopolis and Duartina in western Sao Paulo, appear to belong to senate-imposed president Michel Temer. Some 800 landless people took control of the land at 6 a.m. under the slogan “Corrupt (Elements) Give Us Back Our Land.”

“The objective of this action is to denounce the attack on the Brazilian Constitution promoted by the coup government of Michel Temer, both with the absurd provisional measures that have been destroying the rights of Brazilians, and their corrupt practices together with its allies,” Mercedes Zuliane, a national leader of the MST said.

The MST has accused Senator Ciro Nogueira of curruption and his land has been occupied by the group.
The MST has accused Senator Ciro Nogueira of curruption and his land has been occupied by the group. Photo:Twitter / @MST_Oficial
The sign outside Teixeira
The sign outside Teixeira’s farm reads, “Lands of the corrupt for the agrarian reform.” Photo:EFE
An image of Temer
An image of Temer’s property now under the control of the MST. The property is said to be worth US$5 million. Photo:Twitter / @LemusteleSUR
The MST has taken control of Ricardo Teixeira
The MST has taken control of Ricardo Teixeira’s property in Pirai in Rio de Janeiro. Photo:EFE
Around 800 activists took control of this property at 6 a.m. as part of the movement
Around 800 activists took control of this property at 6 a.m. as part of the movement’s National Day of Struggle. Photo:EFE
The MST wants the president and his cronies to repatriate their land to the public to be used for agriculture.
The MST wants the president and his cronies to repatriate their land to the public to be used for agriculture. Photo:EFE
The MST rejects the government proposal to ease restrictions on foreigners who want to own land in Brazil, especially if that ownership is at the expense of poor citizens in irregular settlements.
The MST rejects the government proposal to ease restrictions on foreigners who want to own land in Brazil, especially if that ownership is at the expense of poor citizens in irregular settlements. Photo:EFE
Part of the MST action has included protesting the government
Part of the MST action has included protesting the government’s proposed austerity reforms and the murders of Indigenous campesinos. Photo:Twitter / @MST_Oficial
According to the MST, "The objective of this action is to denounce the attack on the Brazilian Constitution promoted by the coup government of Michel Temer."
According to the MST, “The objective of this action is to denounce the attack on the Brazilian Constitution promoted by the coup government of Michel Temer.” Photo:EFE
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