Under the rightwing presidency of Jair Bolsonaro, Brazilians are once again witnessing intimidation tactics against anyone who speaks out against his government. Bolsonaro and his administration have attacked the press, specific journalists, a Supreme Court justice, opposition leaders, the health and science institution FIOCRUZ, and many others. This disturbing trend has just targeted two indigenous leaders. However, this latest strategy failed.
Brazil’s Federal Police agency subpoenaed Sônia Guajajara, the executive coordinator for the Articulation Indigenous Peoples of Brazil (APIB) on April 26 to respond to charges of slander as well as the dissemination of fake news. These accusations are the result of her appearance in a 2020 eight-part web documentary series called Maracá. In it, Guajajara, along with dozens of other natives, activists, artists, and academics denounced numerous health protocol violations committed against indigenous communities by drawing links between Brazil’s 521 years of genocidal history to the current COVID-19 pandemic.
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