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Yanomami Tribe of South America

The Yanomami Tribe of South America has launched a global campaign to expel 20,000 gold miners from their land amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Yanomami Tribe of South America

Key Points

  • The Yanomami live in the rainforests and mountains of northern Brazil and southern Venezuela, and are, according to Survival International, the largest relatively isolated tribe in South America.

    • Guarani, Kaingang, Pataxó, Hã Hã Hãe, Tupinambá, Yanomami, Tikuna and Akuntsu are popular tribes of the Amazon basin. Amazon is a river of South America and its basin is the largest tropical rainforest in the world.
    • Survival International is an international human rights advocacy based in London (UK), which campaigns for the rights of indigenous and tribal peoples around the world.
  • The tribe numbers around 38,000 today, and its members live in contiguous forested territory of around 9.6 million hectares in Brazil and 8.2 million hectares in Venezuela.
  • They live in large, circular houses called yanos or shabonos, some of which can hold up to 400 people.
  • The Yanomami consider all people to be equal, and do not have a chief. Instead, all decisions are based on consensus after long discussions and debates.
  • They are speakers of a Xirianá language.
  • A Brazilian indigenous leader Davi Kopenawa who secured the land rights of the Yanomami people was awarded the Right Livelihood Award-2019, also known as Sweden’s alternative Nobel Prize.