Franciscan bishop wins Pax Christi peace award

 The 2008 Pax Christi International Peace Award has been awarded to Franciscan priest, Dom Luiz Flávio Cappio, the bishop of Barra in the state of Bahia, Brazil, and the members of the Brazilian community who have worked with him.

Dom Luiz was commended for his non-violent action in protest against the Säo Francisco river transposition project. Brazil's third-largest river, the Rio Säo Francisco in the north-eastern state of Bahia, was relocated to build more hydropower stations and supply water for industrial farming, shrimps production and steel plants in an area inhabited by rich people. The project would effectively destroy many fishing villages and river inhabitants and cause vast environmental damage.

The award also honours the actions of members of the community, who worked actively against the project. The struggle behind this Award also echoes the many struggles around the world related to land and water resources and rights.

The Pax Christi International Peace Award is presented each year in recognition of a person or group that embodies the ideals of the Pax Christi movement, and that has worked in an exemplary manner for a more peaceful world.

The award ceremony took place during a weekend of events entitled "Waters for Peace" from 17 - 19 of October 2008 in Sobradinho, in the state of Bahia, Brazil. The weekend was organised by the Pastoral Land Commission (CPT), a Member Organisation of Pax Christi International in Brazil.

Source: Signis

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