Brazil: bill on Amazon land transfers advances

On June 3 the Brazilian Senate approved a bill regulating government transfers of land in the Amazon region. The bill—Conversion Bill 09 (PLV 09/2009, originally MP 458/09)—was passed by the Chamber of Deputies in May and awaits the signature of President Luis Inácio “Lula” da Silva. The Catholic Church’s Pastoral Commission on Land (CPT), Greenpeace, WWF-Brasil (the Brazilian affiliate of the World Wildlife Fund) and other groups say some articles in the measure will enable companies and individuals to keep lands they seized illegally. The law “especially benefits people who should be on trial for usurping areas covered by the agrarian reform,” according to Greenpeace. The groups are urging people to call on Lula (phone +61-3411.1200, +61-3411.1201 or email at to veto the articles. (Adital, June 12)

From Weekly News Update on the Americas, June 14

See our last posts on Brazil and the struggle for the Amazon.