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Member of Biofilia, Brazil, and journalist for Chasque news agency, Felipe Amaral highlighted the importance of the increasing strategic alliances between environmental organizations and rural social movements.
The interview with Real World Radio was held in the framework of the joint march of La Via Campesina through the National Peasant and Indigenous Movement, Friends of the Earth International (represented by delegations from Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Chile and Uruguay) and several other grassroots organizations in the World Food Day and in rejection to the World Forestry Congress held in Buenos Aires.
“ The M.O of these companies is the same in all countries, including criminalization of social movements. People have to act as a bloc, our struggles should not have borders, or deadlines”, stated Felipe Amaral.
The activist also pointed out that the recent economic crisis of the country implied an accelerated process of public funds transfer to private actors, thus giving corporations an opportunity to draft new proposals to obtain as much profit as possible to compensate for the lost time.
Brazil´s international importance and the relevance of its political decisions are key elements for the Latin American context. We asked Felipe Amaral about the potential influence of Brazilian social movement in the policies of the government to be elected in October 2010.
“Lula´s second administration has been very hard for the social movement. Mainly for environmentalists, with many infrastructure works: harbours, highways, hydroelectric dams. And this second administration moved away from social and workers movements. This is important because the movements gained independence, but how to recover access to a government? Were we the ones who moved away, or was the government which had another agenda? I believe the latter is correct”, Felipe said.
In terms of options he said: “Today, we don´t have a candidate who responds to movements, in environmental terms we don´t have any organic environmentalist as a candidate”. He also made reference to the candidacy of former Environment Minister, Marina Silva, who appears as a “third force”, splitting from the workers party. But according to Amaral, this is not real, since “Marina has already made agreements with certain corporate sector that represents “greenwashing”.
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