Brazilian military police on Tuesday attacked thousands of Indigenous tribe members in front of the country's Congress in Brasilia while protesting for greater rights.
Several demonstrators attempted to occupy the pond in front of the congressional office and were met by police who used rubber bullets, pepper spray and flash bombs to disperse the crowd. In response, Indigenous protestors shot arrows at the police and in the direction of Congress.
On several occasions, Indigenous women attempted to form a human shield around the main lawn in front of Congress. However, the group was dispersed by police. According to local reports, one Indigenous woman was injured and four were detained. Makeshift coffins were also thrown in the pond, symbolizing state-sanctioned deaths of Indigenous people.
While military police estimated 2,000 people at the encampment on Tuesday, indigenous organizers claimed a total of 3,000 participants.
On Monday, several Indigenous Brazilian groups set up Acampamento Terra Livre, Free Land Camp, in front of Brazil's Congress. The encampment is intended to serve as headquarters for five days of protests demanding respect for the earth, the demarcation of Indigenous lands, an end to the weakening of public institutions and policies aimed to protect the rights of Indigenous peoples and several other demands. Thousands of Indigenous people from across the country are expected to participate in the demonstration in coming days.
According to Free Land Camp organizers, the mass mobilization is intended to unify struggles in defense of Indigenous Brazilians and while discussing and adopting political demands combatting the constitutional violations of Indigenous peoples' rights. The mobilization is also dedicated to combatting the emergence of anti-Indigenous public policies implemented by the Brazilian government.