SEATTLE (Scrap Monster): The new report prepared by the Hutukara Yanomami Association in partnership with Instituto Socioambiental says that illegal gold mining boom in Brazil has given rise to several issued including disease, violence and grave human rights violations on the Yanomami people. The report blamed high gold prices and tacit government support for the rise in illegal gold mining activities on the country’s largest indigenous reservation.
As per the report, wildcat mining on rivers in the reservation witnessed 46% surge last year, thereby threatening isolated communities. It alleged that the miners who encroach on Yanomami territory are bolder, better equipped and often armed with weapons. The mining camps enjoy support from both local business elite and organized criminal gangs, who play a key role in gold smuggling acts.
The report says that the indigenous health outposts which were abandoned by medical staff due to government funding cuts and lack of security have now been taken over by illegal miners. The mercury used in the separation process has poisoned rivers, which in turn has led to significant surge in neurological defects among newborns.
The government authorities have failed to enforce laws to curb the growing invasion of Yanomami land.