The Cinta-Larga indigenous group in Brazil is on the brink of collapse as they struggle to confront illegal mining in one of the world’s largest diamond deposits.
“Our land is our spirit. An indigenous person without his land is an indigenous person without a soul.” This is how one of the leaders of the Cinta-Larga tribe ends his speech at a meeting held in May to discuss new indigenous policies. Believed by the indigenous to be inseparable, the land and the soul of the Cinta-Larga suffer together: the cultural genocide and the violence against their members is the result of violations that occurred on the grounds that they consider sacred.
Beneath the indigenous reserves Roosevelt, Serra Morena, Aripuanã and Aripuanã Park, between the states of Rondônia and Mato Grosso where the Cinta-Larga live, hides what may be the world’s largest diamond deposit.