Roberto Santos Araújo, 35 years old, husband, father and a coordinator in the Terra Nossa settlement, which fights for the land rights of Tucumã Farm in Vale do Jamari, Rondonia, was killed on February 1st of 2017.
The body was found in the Km 52 of RO-257 in the rural area of Ariquemes. He was laying in the road with gunshot wounds and beside him was a motorcycle, money and documents.
The Tucumã Farm is the same one which was the location of a manhunt in 2016 when 5 peasants from Terra Nossa settlement were hunted down by gunmen for hours, 3 of them managed to escape, but 1 was found dead and burnt and the other went missing. The case also involved an assault to a journalist who was covering the story and threats to witnesses.
Furthermore, according to “Comissão Pastoral da Terra” – an organization dedicated to the fight against violence in rural areas – several peasants from Terra Nossa settlement were killed in 2017, including Roberto Santos Araújo. The persistence of the problem in the area makes it obvious the failure of the police and government to ensure the safety of the peasant communities and to solve the issue of land rights conflicts.