Indigenous protesters blocked a key Brazilian grain highway again on Tuesday evening after a six-hour pause to allow a long line of trucks carrying corn to pass, and plan to stay there for another 24 hours before obeying a court order to leave, reports Reuters.
The Kayapo tribe said in a statement that the federal government had failed to protect them from the coronavirus pandemic that has killed four of their elders, and has not consulted them on a plan to build a railway next to their land.
The BR-163 links towns in the nation’s biggest farm state Mato Grosso to the port of Miritituba, an important export river gateway in Pará state. With the soy season almost over, the main grain transported on the road at present is corn.
The railway will run parallel to the BR-163 highway, which has become an important route for exporting grains to the river ports for transshipment on to larger ships on the Amazon river.