Date: Fri, 15 Mar 1996 18:33:33 -0300
Subject: Funai changes president the third time in a year

Newsletter n. 201

    The lawyer Julio Gaiger took office this Thursday (March 14) as 
the third president of Funai during Fernando Henrique Cardoso's term.  
Gaiger replaces Marcio Santilli who last Friday (March 8) abandoned 
his brief and troubled administration, strongly criticizing groups 
within the organ.  In an article distributed yesterday, Cimi 
(Indianist Missionary Council) judges that the new president should
carry on the task of his predecessor, making the Decree 1,775/96 
workable. Cimi emphasizes that this is a very serious moment for 
Indian peoples and organizations as well as for societies in defense 
of Indian and human rights in Brazil and the exterior and makes an 
appeal for a joint struggle for the protection of Indian rights.
``It is necessary to redouble the vigilance, the articulation and the 
struggle in defense of the Indian rights assured by the Brazilian 
Constituion and more urgently strenghthen the campaign for the 
revogation of Decree 1,775/96.''
    The Council for the Articulation of Indigenous Peoples and 
Organizations of Brazil (Capoib) affirms that the nomination of Julio 
Gaiger has the ``effect of propaganda or advertising'', since 
regarding social issues the government has lost space in the 
international community. For Capoib, the new president will do 
everything to obtain the support of national and international 
societies in defense of Indians. ``The Minister of Justice opted for 
this name because Jzlio is part of this policy of negotiations the 
government has established against Indian Peoples.'', Capoib 
    Capoib concludes their article manifesting to public opinion, 
national and international, ``repudiation to the continuity of 
governmental anti-Indian policies expressed in the new decree, against 
which we reaffirm our disposition to fight until it is revogated.''
Julio Gaiger is a lawyer, worked in Cimi from 1986 to 1991, when he 
left to become a parlamentary advisor in the National Congress. Last 
year he was an auxiliary to the Justice Minister and is responsible 
for the final text of the Decree 1,775/96.  He also admits that in 
recent months he has analysed various contestations to demarcations of
Indian lands presented to Funai.


    The deputies of the European Parlament Wolfgang Kreissl-Dorfler e 
Honorio Novo sent correspondence to President Fernando Henrique 
criticizing affirmations of the Brazilian Government regarding the 
resolution of the European Parlament taken in February over Decree 
1,775/96.  The deputies emphasize that it was not the first time that
the Parlament issued an opinion on Indian rights in Brazil. Contrary  
to what Minister Jobim declared in a Brazilian newspaper, the deputies 
seek to maintain themselves informed about the problem's evolution. 
They criticize Jobims position in the same interview that informs of 
his trip to Brussels to explain to the deputies the changes in 
legislation. For Kreissl-Dorfler and Novo the government let four 
months pass between the Parlament's last two declarations on the same 
theme without taking initiative to manifest informations and 
clarifications. The deputies affirmam that they are aware of their 
democratic duty to ``call to task and criticize when it appears to us 
that measures are being taken which vitally damage the interests and 
rights of minorities.''
                      Brasilia, march 14th, 1996
                 Indianist Missionary Council  - Cimi