PF and Ibama destroy almost 30 dredgers and rafts used on indigenous land in Amazonas
A joint operation by Ibama and the Federal Police against illegal miners destroyed 26 dredgers and ferries in the second largest indigenous land in Brazil, located in Vale do Javari, in the interior of Amazonas. Dredgers are huge and can cause major environmental damage.
A Operation Xapiri combating illegal mining in Amazonas is concentrated in the municipalities of São Paulo de Olivença and Jutaí. In total, 26 illegal mining dredgers and ferries were destroyed.
The places where the equipment was located are difficult to access, but not even the dryness of the rivers prevented the action of illegal miners. The Federal Police and Ibama used helicopters to reach the locations.
“We had impressive results, especially considering the dry period. The PF, together with Ibama, managed to establish an action methodology to energetically confront these criminal organizations that operate in the Vale do Javari region”, said Umberto Ramos, superintendent of PF-AM.
The remote locations of the operation are within the Javari Valley, the second largest indigenous land in the country. The presence of miners in this region worries Brazilian authorities not only due to illegal activity or environmental damage, but also due to the risks of contact with isolated indigenous people.
“As the mining progresses, the dredgers go further and further up the rivers, as the availability of gold ends up being greater at the headwaters of the rivers and streams, just as all of their logistics become easier as the mining progresses”, he explains. Hugo Loss, coordinator of inspection operations at Ibama.
“So, this means that the advance of mining poses a great risk to this isolated population that was in this region”, he adds.
In addition to the burned dredgers, several materials and boats were destroyed. The agents also collected an antenna used to communicate in the forest. The operation began almost a week ago and is expected to continue.
The Federal Police wants to reach the financiers of illegal gold extraction in this region of the interior of Amazonas.