Society

Data corroborates fears about growing lawlessness in the Brazilian Amazon

Brazil saw its overall murder rate decrease in 2021, but figures saw significant spikes in the Amazon region, highlighting an ongoing trend of violence in Brazil's North

Indigenous people hold a poster asking for justice for Dom Phillips and Bruno Pereira, who were murdered earlier this month in a remote Amazon region. Photo: Bruno Rocha/Agência Enquadrar/Folhapress
Indigenous people hold a poster asking for justice for Dom Phillips and Bruno Pereira, who were murdered earlier this month in a remote Amazon region. Photo: Bruno Rocha/Agência Enquadrar/Folhapress

The brutal murders in early June of British journalist Dom Phillips and Brazilian indigenous expert Bruno Pereira, near the remote Vale do Javari reserve in Brazil’s western Amazon, drew attention to the region’s lawlessness.

In the wake of Messrs. Phillips and Pereira’s deaths, indigenous locals and advocates say they had been warning about the risks of rising violence for some time, as the work of indigenous and environmental defenders in the Amazon increasingly comes up against the interests of the various criminal groups that operate in the rainforest.

Orlando Possuelo, an indigenous expert who advises the Union of Indigenous...

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