Latin America & Caribbean

Brazilian tribe re-occupies farm after deadly clash

Protest by indigenous Brazilians in Brasilia on 5 November 2012
Image caption Indigenous groups have been demanding the return of their ancestral lands

Hundreds of indigenous Brazilians have re-occupied a ranch in the western state of Mato Grosso do Sul.

The Terena indigenous group says the ranch, which belongs to a local politician, lies on their ancestral land.

On Thursday one of their members was shot as police evicted the group from the site, which it had occupied for two weeks.

The police said the Terena had attacked them with bows and arrows.

The officers say they were executing a court order to evict the group but the Indians reacted violently to their approach.

Federal police spokesman Francisco Moraes said the group returned to the ranch on Friday.

Mr Moraes said the situation continued to be "tense", but that there had been no violent incidents since the re-occupations started.

Indigenous activists say farmers in Mato Grosso do Sul frequently use violence and threats to force them off their ancestral territory, and that the local authorities do little to protect them.

The state, which borders Bolivia and Paraguay, is one of the main soya producers in Brazil.

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