José Bernardo da Silva

José Bernardo da Silva, known as Orlando, was a leader of Brazil’s Landless Workers’ Movement (MST) killed in the state of Paraíba in an encampment which is located on land MST families have occupied since July 2017. The land is also claimed by the Brazilian Santa Tereza Group that owns several luxury properties along the country’s coast. He and the camp coordinator, Rodrigo Celestino, were shot dead on the night of December 8, 2018 at the camp by hooded, heavily armed men.

Orlando was the brother of Osvaldo Bernardo, coordinator of the Movement of Dam Affected People in Paraíba (MAB / PB.) Osvaldo and Orlando had another brother named Odilon, also affiliated with MAB, who was murdered in 2009.

After Orlando was killed, the Attorney General’s Office said in a statement in which it expressed solidarity with the victims and reiterated efforts to identify those responsible for the crime. “Now, two days away from the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), another of Osvaldo’s brothers has been killed. In a murky context of violence against social movements, this causes great concern and shows how far we are still from the realization of the rights guaranteed by the Declaration.”

Based on reports by O GLobo, TeleSur and El Pais Brasil

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Date of Killing:08/12/2018

Previous Threats:No information

Type of Work:Farmer

Organisation:Movimento dos Trabalhadores Rurais Sem Terra (MST) | Landless Workers’ Movement

Sector or Type of Rights the HRD Worked On:ESC Rights

Sector Detail:Land Rights, Peasant Communities

More information:Front Line Defenders

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