Raoni, Watatakalu, Tapi, Bemoro and Yabuti, indigenous leaders from the Xingu region, accompanied by representatives of the Association for the Rainforest (AFP), continued their European tour by visiting Berlin after a successful visit to Lisbon. Their visit to the German capital included both institutional meetings and discussions with business leaders and representatives of civil society, all of whom are committed to the preservation of the Amazon, its biodiversity and the rights of indigenous peoples.
A SUSTAINED COMMITMENT TO AMAZON FROM THE MINISTRY OF ECONOMIC COOPERATION AND DEVELOPMENT
On Monday, May 15th, the AFV delegation had the opportunity to meet with State Secretary Udo Philipp of the Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection, who expressed on behalf of the German Vice-Chancellor the importance for Germany of preserving the Amazon and the rights of its indigenous peoples. After a fruitful exchange, the State Secretary committed to carry the delegation's message forward and to continue discussions with the Vice Chancellor and the German Chancellor.
POTENTIAL COOPERATION WITH THE PRIVATE SECTOR
Afterwards, a meeting was held with activist business leaders committed to the preservation of the planet, which opened up new prospects for future collaborations between companies and indigenous communities.
A MEANINGFUL DISCUSSION AT THE MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS
Tuesday, May 16th was marked by several institutional meetings. The indigenous leaders were first received at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, where they met with a dozen representatives from different departments, including the director of the Latin America department, the head of climate issues and the head of indigenous issues. Proposals for working meetings were discussed in order to explore the possibility of strengthening Germany's concrete action in favour of the protection of the Amazonian forest.
The delegation also had the opportunity to meet with Nomid Nouripour, co-president of the German Green Party, who assured his support and that of his party. He also proposed to explore the possibility of a partnership with the Heinrich-Böll Foundation.
A SYMBOLIC MOMENT: THE MEETING WITH THE PRESIDENT OF THE GERMAN REPUBLIC
The delegation then went to Bellevue Palace, the seat of the German presidency, for an official meeting in the private room of the President of the German Republic, Frank-Walter Steinmeier. Raoni offered a ceremonial headdress of cacique to the German president and Tapi a book of the German explorer Karl von den Steinen retelling his first expedition in 1864 to the meeting of the peoples of Xingu. The day continued with a visit to the Brazilian embassy, followed by a meal with the Brazilian ambassador.
AN ACADEMIC CONFERENCE ON THE CHALLENGES OF PROTECTING THE AMAZON
Finally, to conclude their visit to Berlin, the delegation participated in an academic conference organised by the Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung (WZB). The delegation was able to present to a large audience the issues of deforestation in the Amazon, the challenges and dangers that indigenous peoples are facing today, as well as possible solutions to preserve this vital ecosystem.
The German part of the international campaign for the protection of the Amazon was a great success, strengthening the already existing links between the indigenous communities of Brazil and Germany, one of the countries most committed to the preservation of the Amazon, as evidenced by the recent announcements of the government to release more funds for the protection of biodiversity in the Amazon.
We would like to thank once again all the people who made these events possible, showing to be active in their availability and listening to our concerns and projects.
Stay tuned for more information on the next steps and join us in this inspiring campaign!