Journalist for NGO threatened while covering layoffs in Brazil

Brazilian journalist Ruy Sposati was threatened while reporting on lay offs by the Belo Monte Construction Consortium in the city of Altamira in the northern state of Pará on Dec. 12, reported the newspaper Jornal do Brasil.

Sposati, who works for Xingu Vivo para Sempre, an NGO opposed to the construction of the Belo Monte hydroelectric plant on the Xingu River, claimed he was threatened by two men in a truck who called him a "bum" and a "troublemaker." One of the men repeatedly threatened his life, according to the website Cirtuito MT.

The men also tried to take the reporter's camera equipment. Sposati said he called out to nearby police but they did not intervene, reported the Blog da Amazônia.

The journalist reported in his statement to the Federal Public Ministry (MPF in Portuguese) of Pará that the men were driving a vehicle own by the Military Police, according to the Press and Society Institute.

The MPF referred the case on to Pará's state Public Ministry and the Ministry's Internal Affairs office, according to Radioagência NP.