Green MEPs call for suspension of negotiations on EU-Brazil trade deal in wake of election of president Bolsonaro

A group of Green MEPs have today written to the EU president, Jean-Claude Juncker, urging the EU to suspend negotiations on the EU-Mercosur Association agreement, a trade deal between Latin American countries, including Brazil, and the EU.

The MEPs cite concerns about Brazil’s new president, Jair Bolsonaro who has signed an executive order to transfer the regulation of the country’s indigenous reserves to the agricultural ministry thereby jeopardising indigenous people and their land. They say this will permit further land-grabbing, in breach of EU Trade Commissioner Malmström’s stated commitment to protect human rights, and hasten the clearing of rainforest and other areas for agricultural crops. The EU-Mercosur Association Agreement is therefore in contradiction with EU efforts to stop further deforestation and forest degradation, Greens argue.

Molly, who is one of the signatories to the letter, said:

“As feared, Bolsonaro is quickly establishing himself as a president who is willing to ignore human rights and trash the globally significant Amazon rainforest to reward his agricultural paymasters.

“The EU must show solidarity with the indigenous people of Brazil and their environment and protect the Amazon rainforest which is so vital to preventing climate breakdown. The Commission must immediately suspend negotiations on an EU-Mercosur trade agreement until such time as we can feel confident that human rights will be respected and Brazil’s environment protected.”