People Affected by Samarco's dam burst protests against Justice's decision in favor of mining companies

People affected by the tailings dam burst (known as the case of Mariana) from the states of Minas Gerais and Espirito Santo questions the (in) Justice that has favored the mining companies Samarco, Vale and BHP Biliton.

Photo of the protest

Circa of 500 people affected organized within the Movement of People Affected by Dams (MAB) protest in front of the 12th Federal Court of Justice in the capital city of Belo Horizonte. Those affected denounce the way Federal Justice has been treating the people affected by the largest social-environmental crime of Brazil: negligence and in favor of the criminal mining companies Samarco, Vale e BHP Billiton.

More than one million of people are affected since the dam burst occurred on November 5th of 2015, since then the affected families live in uncertainty of their futures. The people that lost their homes due to the mud flood from the several municipalities (Bento Rodrigues, Paracatu, Ponte do Gama, Pedras, Gesteira and Barra Longa) of the district of Mariana, still today are waiting for the resettlement project for their new homes.

“The feeling that we have is that we are being stalled by the mining companies. Our hopes and dreams are being paralyzed. We live in anxiety without knowing which day we will be able to go back home.”, says Luzia Queiróz, affected from the municipality of Paracatu de Baixo.

photo of the protest at the front the federal justice building

The mining tailings avalanche which flood down to the Doce river basin interrupted the water supply in several cities, thousands of workers lost their jobs, the contamination killed several fish species and many people are getting ill due to the consumption of contaminated water.

At the Doce river base, at the coastline of Espirito Santo state, there are still entire communities not recognized as affected by the dam burst and thousands of fishers are jobless since then and can't afford any food for themselves.

“Today the people affected that are organized come to question and demand real justice from the Brazilian justice. 21 months after the criminal dam burst and the only answer until now has been several benefits and privileges conceded by the Federal Justice in benefit of Samarco, Vale and BHP. It's very clear for society that the Brazilian justice power only saves those that have economic power,” says one of MAB leaderships.