MST calls Brazilian people to discuss ways out of the country’s crisis

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Landless Workers’ Movement releases open letter endorsing Lula’s candidacy and demanding justice for Marielle Franco

MST members participate in protests demanding freedom for Lula.

Source: Brasil de Fato / The Dawn News / May 15, 2018

The Landless Workers’ Movement (Movimento dos Trabalhadores Rurais Sem Terra – MST) released an open letter to the Brazilian people on Saturday (12) in which it stands for ex-president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s innocence and endorses his candidacy in the country’s upcoming elections. The movement also calls for the investigation of the murder of Rio de Janeiro councilwoman Marielle Franco.

“Brazil is going through a severe economic, political, social, and environmental crisis, resulting from an international crisis of capitalism and this system’s inability to solve the contradiction it creates,” the letter reads.

“In this context, authoritarian moves, such as coups and attacks on democracy, have been taking place to guarantee a brutal neoliberal offense, in which workers are denied their rights and the State is seized and subjected to the interests of big corporations.”

The MST says the ones responsible for the crisis the country is suffering are “international financial capital; the media, especially Rede Globo [Brazil’s largest media conglomerate], as they fuel and incite coup and fascist movements; and the country’s Justice system, which, on the one hand, puts its own interests and privileges above the Constitution and, on the other, rewards with impunity the repression and brutality against the poor.”

Read the full letter below:

LETTER FROM THE MST TO THE BRAZILIAN PEOPLE

Brazil is going through a severe economic, political, social, and environmental crisis, resulting from an international crisis of capitalism and this system’s inability to solve the contradiction it creates. In this context, authoritarian moves, such as coups and attacks on democracy, have been taking place to guarantee a brutal neoliberal offense, in which workers are denied their rights and the State is seized and subjected to the interests of big corporations.

We must be clearheaded and identify who are the ones responsible for this crisis and for the political instability we are living in order to challenge them: international financial capital; the media, especially Rede Globo [Brazil’s largest media conglomerate], as they fuel and incite coup and fascist movements; and the country’s Justice system, which, on the one hand, puts its own interests and privileges above the Constitution and, on the other, rewards with impunity the repression and brutality against the poor.

This moment calls for unity in action among progressive forces and an effort to build a People’s Project for Brazil capable of challenging the country’s structural problems, fighting extreme poverty and unemployment; bringing development back; facing the issue of housing and urban mobility in the cities; guaranteeing quality public health care and education; carrying out agrarian reform in the countryside; protecting and stopping the privatization of common natural goods; and restoring national sovereignty.

Therefore, we call society at large to build and take part in the Brazilian People’s Congress, held by Frente Brasil Popular the People’s Brazil Front , as a space to discuss and organize people around the country’s issues and the necessary structural measures to overcome them.

We once again restate our firm belief in President Lula’s innocence, advocating for his right to run for office and, in face of this political prison resulting from an illegal, illegitimate process, we demand his release!

For all these reasons, the Landless Workers’ Movement announces that it endorses Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva as a presidential candidate, as we understand he represents the struggle against the coup and the Brazilian people’s desire for change amid this crisis that is ravaging all of us.

We will not let impunity be forgotten nor will we connive at it. This is why we demand a solution and justice for our comrade Marielle and so many young poor victims of repression. May her example keep inspiring the youth, women, and workers in these times of repression and authoritarianism. In her memory, the Landless Workers do not take a moment of silence, but rather make a commitment to fight against the coup and the denial of rights and freedom, for a fairer, more equal, sovereign country!

Free Lula! Marielle Lives!

Fight, Build a People’s Agrarian Reform!

National Board of the Landless Workers’ Movement

São Paulo, May 12th, 2018

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