Organisations challenge, in the Supreme Court, the law that establishes the Temporal Milestone and weakens the protection of indigenous lands

26 janeiro 2024

In the lawsuit, the organisations argue that the provisions of Law 14,701/2023 violate constitutional principles and international treaties
By WWF-Brazil

Civil society organisations, led by the Climate Observatory, Greenpeace Brazil, WWF-Brazil, Arayara International Institute, Alana Institute and Alternative Association Terrazul, formalised on the 17th a request to join as amicus curiae (friend of the court) in the Direct Action of Unconstitutionality (ADI, in Portuguese) nº 7582, in the Federal Supreme Court, which challenges provisions of Law nº 14,701/2023, known as the Temporal Milestone Law.

In a historic action, these organisations join the indigenous movement to confront what they consider a significant setback in the rights of traditional peoples and communities and a threat to the environment.

The lawsuit filed by the Articulation of Indigenous Peoples of Brazil (APIB, in Portuguese) and the parties REDE Sustentabilidade and PSOL (Socialism and Liberty Party) questions provisions of the aforementioned law which have been vetoed by President Lula, but that were reinserted in the text after the overturning of the vetoes by the National Congress in December 2023.

What is at stake

In addition to the establishment of the Temporal Milestone thesis, already declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, the law paves the way for other serious setbacks, such as the suppression of the right to free, prior and informed consultation of indigenous communities; creates additional barriers to demarcation processes and limits the removal of invaders until the demarcation process is completed, among others.

In the lawsuit, the organisations argue that the provisions of Law No. 14,701/2023 violate constitutional principles and international treaties, weakening the protection of indigenous peoples and threatening the preservation of Indigenous Lands.

The Temporal Milestone raises serious concerns related to the demarcation of Indigenous Lands. Socio-environmental organisations and defenders of indigenous rights ensure that the legislation could result in adverse impacts, not only for indigenous peoples, but also for environmental preservation, which is essential for ecological balance.

Indigenous Lands play a critical role in climate regulation and biodiversity conservation. The weakening of these areas can have significant impacts on combating climate change and preserving vital ecosystems, which are international commitments assumed by the country in the Paris (on climate) and Kunming-Montreal (on biodiversity) Agreements.

The protection of indigenous rights and socio-environmental preservation are shared responsibilities that affect us all.

Next step

In addition to asking to be admitted as Friends of the Court, the organisations reinforce the request made in the APIB action for the Supreme Court to suspend the contested articles of the Temporal Milestone, while the ADI is judged. This would prevent the rule from producing legal effects in the demarcations of indigenous lands, until the Court assesses its constitutionality.

The participation of the amicus curiae aims to enrich the technical and legal debate that will be subject to consideration by the Supreme Court in this lawsuit.
In a historic action, these organisations join the indigenous movement to confront what they consider a significant setback in the rights of traditional peoples and communities and a threat to the environment.
© Myke Sena/WWF-Brasil
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DOE AGORA