As long as Xingu exists, we will keep fighting

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Live better on our land, defend our rights, and strengthen our bond.

The Yudja Mïratu Association of the Big Bend of the Xingu River (AYMIX) was formed on April 28, 2013, by the families of the Mïratu village, in the Paquiçamba Indigenous Land, located in the Big Bend of the Xingu River, in the state of Pará.

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The Big Bend of the Xingu River


River curve that flows alongside two Indigenous Lands

The future of this area is still uncertain

The so-called Big Bend of the Xingu River is a stretch of approximately 100 km on the left bank of the river. This river curve flows alongside two Indigenous Lands: Arara da Volta Grande (lit. Big Bend Macaw) and Paquiçamba. It is also home to hundreds of riparian families who depend on the river to survive. The future of this area is still uncertain.

The environmental impact studies concerning the Belo Monte Hydroelectric Plant do not account for the real impacts resulting from the reduced water flow in this stretch of the river, which will be barred, home to one of the planet’s largest environmental diversities.

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The Juruna are traditional inhabitants of the Xingu islands located between the Big Bend of the Xingu River and the Fresco River. These islands and the riverbanks were territory of a canoeing civilization that included the Xipaia and other peoples that have disappeared since the white man, some hundreds of years ago, began to arrive in the region.

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The word Juruna means “black mouth”, and it is the name given to the ethnicity by other indigenous peoples and whites. Yudjá is the name that they use in their own language to speak of themselves, and it means they are from the Xingu River, that they were created in this river, that they are lords of the river.

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The Juruna have a special relationship with the Xingu River: they are excellent navigators and fishermen, employing a large variety of fishing techniques, and having a deep knowledge of the river’s ecology. Daring fishermen, they plunge fearlessly into its waters in search of acaris (catfish) or tracajás (river turtle).

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The Juruna are spread in Altamira, on the banks of the Xingu River (especially in the Big Bend) and in the Paquiçamba Indigenous Land, in three villages: Paquiçamba, Muratu, and Furo Seco. There is also a village on kilometer 17 of the road between Altamira and Vitória do Xingu.

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The Xingu River is essential to the life of the Juruna: aside from living mainly off of fishing, they depend on the river to go from place to place, as they participate in a wide network of kinship and friendship relations that include Altamira and all of the Big Bend.

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The mining project called the “Big Bend Project”, whose interested entrepreneur is the company Belo Sun Mineração Ltda., intends to install itself in the Big Bend of the Xingu River, less than 10 kilometers away from the Paquiçamba indigenous land.

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Fishing independent monitoring


Fishing is the main activity for the subsistence of the Juruna

5,203.106

Fish consumed (kg)

3,426.038

Fish marketed (kg)

8,629.486

Total (kg)

60.3

Fish consumed (%)

39.7

Fish marketed (%)

100

Total (%)

Data collected between September 2013 and September 2016.

Data extracted in partnership with the PESCA+ Platform, and through the fishing monitoring mobile application.

 

Canoe


Previous editions and promoting the upcoming one

Xingu Canoe

Action carried out by the Yudja Miratu Indigenous Association of the Big Bend of the Xingu River (Aymix) and ISA seeks to draw attention to the problems the region’s peoples and communities have faced since the plant’s installation. Its main objective is to seek allies and partners aware of the magnitude of the transformations suffered by the Xingu River and its residents as a result of Belo Monte’s installation.

Exceptional navigators, the Juruna and riparian peoples have the possibility of generating income from this type of activity, using their deep knowledge of the river, acting as guides, renting their canoes and infrastructure, telling about the local context, as well as from the sale of crops and handicrafts.

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Upcoming Canoe Protest

2017

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