La Via Campesina is shocked to learn about the assassination of MST militant, Waldomiro Costa Pereira

Waldomiro Costa Pereira, a historic militant of the Landless Workers Movement (MST) of Brazil, was killed on Monday 20 March by five strangers who invaded the hospital in the city of Paraupebas. Costa Pereira who was in the hospital of the city of Paraupebas, was recovering from an attack of which he was victim last Saturday.

“Last weekend Waldomiro was the victim of a gunshot wound on his property, in the municipality of Eldorado dos Carajás. He was sent to the General Hospital of Paraupebas, where he underwent a surgical procedure, but at dawn on Monday five men invaded the medical center, surrendered the guards and executed him, “official sources said.

Waldomiro was a survivor of the April 17,1996 massacre(a) in the Amazonian State of Pará in Brazil that killed 19 peasants. Although he had resigned two years ago as one of the regional leaders in Pará, he was still considered one of the most important militants of the peasant movement in the region.

In a solidarity statement with the family of Waldomiro Costa Pereira the MST says: “The MST does not know the motives for the murder. As a movement struggling for life, we repudiate any and all forms of violence against men and women. This is another murder of workers in the state of Pará, where the government is guilty of its incompetence in taking care of the security of the population. There is a high rate of impunity that has become commonplace, as has the action of criminal militia groups.”

More links:

Brasil: Asesinan a militante histórico del Movimiento de los Trabajadores Rurales Sin Tierra (MST)

(source: EFE/Telesur/MST)

This is a developing story and the article will be updated as and when more information is made availble. 

(a) On April 17th, 1996, 19 peasants were killed when military police in the Amazonian State of Pará in Brazil attacked a large number of members of the Landless Workers Movement (MST) who were blockading a highway in order to demand agrarian reform.  Two more people died from their injuries several days later, and hundreds of others were so seriously injured that they could not go on working in agriculture. La Via Campesina, which was then in the midst of holding its second international conference at Tlaxcala in Mexico, declared April 17th to be the International Day of Farmers’ and Peasants’ Struggle.