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Xingu Brazilian river, rising in central Mato Grosso state. It flows n for 1979km (1230mi) and empties into the River Amazon at its delta. It courses through rainforest and is navigable only in its lower reaches. The area focused international attention on the plight of Native Americans when a government proposal to dam the Xingu meant the flooding of tribal land. The dam and hydroelectric scheme, costing US$3.2 billion, finished in December 1994.