IACHR Grants Precautionary Measures in Favor of the Guapoy Community of the Kaiowá Guaraní Indigenous People in Brazil

October 12, 2022

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Resolution 50/2022

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Washington, D.C. – The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) issued Resolution 50/2022 on October 2, 2022, to grant precautionary measures in favor of members of the Guapoy community of the Kaiowá Guaraní indigenous people in Brazil, in the belief that they face a serious, urgent risk of suffering irreparable harm to their rights.

The party that requested these precautionary measures reported that the Guapoy community of the Kaiowá Guaraní indigenous people—located in the municipality of Amambai, in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul—is at risk after being subjected to violence in the context of land ownership disputes in the area. According to these reports, two indigenous persons who would have been proposed beneficiaries were murdered on July 14 and September 13, 2022.

The State explained the measures that had been taken by government institutions (military, civilian, and federal police forces, the public prosecutor's office, the ombudsperson's office, and the National Public Security Force) to protect and support the indigenous persons who are the proposed beneficiaries of these precautionary measures. The State further said that these events are being investigated by the Federal Police, with the support of the federal public prosecutor's office and of the institution that focuses on Brazil's indigenous persons (FUNAI).

The Commission assessed these measures and noted that, while action has been taken, the party who requested these precautionary measures reported new instances of violence. As a whole, the IACHR notes that the violence has increased over time, affecting the lives and integrity of members of the beneficiary community. Following a court decision on this matter on July 4, 2022, two indigenous persons were murdered in a short period of time, and one of them had suffered prior armed attacks.

In keeping with Article 25 of its Rules of Procedure, the IACHR decided to grant these precautionary measures and asked the State of Brazil to:

  1. Adopt any culturally appropriate measures necessary to protect the rights to life and humane treatment of members of the Guapoy community of the Kaiowá Guaraní indigenous people (in particular, the State needs both to ensure that its officers will respect beneficiaries' rights, in compliance with the standards of international human rights law, and to protect those rights from dangerous acts that may be perpetrated by third parties)
  2. Come to an agreement with the beneficiaries and/or their representatives concerning any measures that need to be taken
  3. Report on any actions implemented to investigate the events that gave rise to the adoption of these precautionary measures, in order to prevent such events from happening again in the future

The fact that these precautionary measures have been granted and their adoption by the State do not entail a prejudgment on a potential petition that may be filed before the inter-American system to allege violations of rights protected by the applicable instruments.

A principal, autonomous body of the Organization of American States (OAS), the IACHR derives its mandate from the OAS Charter and the American Convention on Human Rights. The Inter-American Commission has a mandate to promote respect for and to defend human rights in the region and acts as a consultative body to the OAS in this area. The Commission is composed of seven independent members who are elected in an individual capacity by the OAS General Assembly and who do not represent their countries of origin or residence.

No. 227/22

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