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Violent deaths of quilombolas almost double in five years in Brazil

The annual average number of murders of members of quilombola communities in Brazil has practically doubled in the last five years, compared to the period from 2008 to 2017. Maranhão is the state with the highest number of quilombola murders in 2022: a total of nine deaths. Next come Bahia, Pará and Pernambuco, with four cases each. This is what the report “Racism and Violence against Quilombos in Brazil” indicates, released this Friday (17), by the National Coordination of Articulation of Black Rural Quilombola Communities (Conaq).

The majority of quilombola murders were recorded in the Northeast (65.6%), followed by the North (12.5%) and Southeast (9.4%). The South and Central-West regions recorded 6.25% of murder cases.

During the period analyzed, 32 murders were mapped, with cases recorded in 11 states, in all regions of the country. The Central-West, which had not registered cases in the first edition of the study, is now part of the list with a homicide registered in Goiás.

Land conflicts and gender-based violence are among the main causes of quilombola murders in Brazil. At least 13 quilombolas were killed in the context of fighting and defending the territory.

Conflicts over land

In 10 communities of the 26 communities in which murders were recorded, there are no open cases at the National Institute of Agrarian Reform and Colonization (Incra), the agency responsible for land regularization of quilombola territories. Among those in this situation, 70% of the murders were motivated by land conflicts, that is, 7 murders.

Among the 11 quilombos that are fully or partially titled, land conflicts represented 27% of murders. Among the three murders recorded for this reason, two took place in territories that were only partially titled.

“The full titling of territories is a guarantee of security for the lives of quilombolas, as it removes their land from the market and increases the autonomy of management of the areas, and thus reduces harassment from land grabbers and real estate speculation. However, to combat violence against quilombos, it is also necessary that quilombola territories also be places for the development of public policies, such as preventing violence against women, protecting human rights defenders, and other policies in which recognizes the specific realities of this audience”, highlights Terra de Direito’s legal advisor, Kathleen Tiê.

According to the Palmares Foundation, there are 1,805 processes open at Incra for land regularization of quilombola territories.

Victimized women

Although men are the main victims, quilombola women have been killed because they are women. The proportionality of quilombola women murdered more than doubled compared to previous research. The first edition identified eight female leaders murdered in ten years, while the second volume recorded the murder of nine women in five years.

In the case of women, the research identified that spouses, partners, ex-spouses and ex-partners are the perpetrators in all cases of femicide.

The research Racism and violence against Quilombos in Brazil is an initiative of the National Coordination of Articulation of Black Rural Quilombola Communities (Conaq) and Terra de Direito to identify and analyze the violence that affects quilombolas across the country. The second edition identifies murders recorded in quilombos between 2018 and 2022.

Source: CNN Brasil

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