jueves, octubre 25, 2007

Violence against Brazilian activists

1.Two killed at protest against GM seed farm
John Vidal The Guardian, October 23 2007

Two men were killed and five wounded when guards working for the Swiss biotech company Syngenta clashed with Brazilians invading a GM seed farm in Parana state. 'Forty gunmen got off a bus and started shooting. They executed Valmir Motta, shot five peasants and beat up another man,' said a spokesman for the rural workers' group Via Campesina, which had organised the action in protest at what they called the illegal growing of the seeds. One guard was killed. A Syngenta spokesman confirmed that there had been a confrontation and 'deadly injuries'.


2.IFOAM Condemns Violent Actions Against Brazilian Farmers for Protesting GMO
IFOAM - Press Release Bonn, Germany, October 23 2007 http://persianoad.wordpress.com/2007/10/25/ifoam-condemns-violent-actions-against-brazilian-farmers-for-protesting-gmo/

The International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) condemns all violent actions in solving problems related to GMO conflicts. The incidents reported in the press release from Via Campesina about Syngenta’s armed militia that killed a peasant farmer and Via Campesina member in Brazil protesting GMO field trials are shocking.

A group of 150 farmers related to Via Campesina occupied Syngenta’s field trials October 21st with the aim of turning it into a gmo-free center for Agroecology. Syngenta responded with arms, resulting in the death of one farmer, the father of three children, and injuries to six other rural workers.

We extend our heartfelt support to the injured farmers, to the family of farmer Valmir Motta, whose life was lost so tragically, and to the Brazilian farmer association MST. The goal of the farmer action was to defend an agricultural system that offers life choices and possibilities for small farmers and the environment, the same goals that are pursued by the organic movement with different means.

Genetic engineering represents a threat to the entire biosphere, and moreover, poses economic and environmental risks for organic producers. By releasing organisms with genetic constructs that have never before existed in nature and cannot be recalled, genetic engineering in agriculture causes negative and irreversible environmental impacts.

Release of GMOs implies denial of free choice, both for farmers and consumers, and violates farmers' fundamental rights, thus endangering their economic independence. These are all unacceptable threats to individuals, humanity and our earth.

IFOAM's Executive Director Angela B. Caudle notes 'This tragic incident shows that GMOs represent a culture of violence. Organic and agroecological approaches try to bring peace to this world. IFOAM offers its condolences to the family of Valmir Motta, the fallen farmer.'

SOURCE : www.IFOAM.org

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