JOIN US! We Demand Land Rights Now!

land rights

JOIN US! We Demand Land Rights Now!

WHY GLOBAL CALL TO ACTION?

We demand #landrightsnow!

Our GOAL is to work hand in hand with all indigenous brothers and sisters across the globe, in collaboration with other sectors, groups and advocates to secure the collective land rights of more than 370 million indigenous peoples around the world. By 2020, we aim to double the area of land legally recognized as owned or controlled by indigenous peoples.

We are the guardians of this planet! We want Change!

We have nurtured and conserved our land and resources for centuries, which are the bases of our culture, identity, traditional knowledge, sustainable livelihoods and wellbeing. In spite of our invaluable roles and contributions to conservation, enhancement of biodiversity, low carbon lifestyle and sustainable resource governance, our rights to our land and resources are violated with impunity in the name of “national development” causing more inequality, discrimination, hunger and poverty. It’s time to change the dominant system that disregards indigenous peoples’ rights and empowerment; and instead uphold the sustainability of mother earth.

Securing land rights of indigenous peoples is critical in achieving the Global Agenda: 2030 (Sustainable Development Goals) and in addressing climate change. The success of eradicating poverty and hunger and “Leaving No One Behind” is hinged on securing our land rights.

Land is Life! Let’s champion this Global Call to Action and build the broadest unity and solidarity of indigenous peoples across the globe to defend our land, territories and resources! This is our duty to protect our collective survival and for the future generations.

PARTICIPANTS FROM ASIA[1]

Organizations:

208 CSOs and IPOs from India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Thailand, Myanmar, Taiwan[2]

Indigenous Community:

1, Tananahu community, Maluku, Indonesia

WHAT HAVE BEEN DONE?

National Launch of the Call:

Malaysia, 2 March, 2016

Jaringan Orang Asal SeMalaysia (JOAS) announced their plans to map out and consolidate Orang Asal territories in conjunction with the launch of the Global Call to Action on Indigenous and Community Land Rights.

More information: http://iphrdefenders.net/malaysia-joas-map-orang-asal-traditional-lands-territories/

Myanmar, 5 March, 2016

One-day forum on land rights discussed the newly adopted National Land Use Policy— NLUP, opportunities and challenges, as well as the engagement of civil society organizations and indigenous peoples, with the country’s new government on the land rights law.

More information: https://www.facebook.com/LandRightsNow370/

Cambodia, 15 March, 2016

Gathering and press conference organized by the Cambodia Indigenous Peoples Alliance (CIPA), brought together 30 indigenous representatives from indigenous communities to share on the land rights issues and cases they are facing.

Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9yPaG1JEvHM

Thailand, 30-31 March, 2016

Two-day national workshop on land issues held in Chiang Mai, brought together more than 100 indigenous representatives from all over Thailand. The workshop ended with a press conference and a Declaration of the Network of Indigenous Peoples in Thailand (NIPT) on the Proposed Solutions to the Problems of Land and Resource Management by Indigenous Peoples.

More information: https://www.facebook.com/LandRightsNow370/

Asia Regional Launch of the Call:

Myanmar, 12 March, 2016

Around 60 indigenous representatives from 12 countries, namely Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Japan, Taiwan/China, India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Nepal, Malaysia and the Philippines, jointly launched the Campaign at the regional level. The participants, including representatives of indigenous women and youth as well as indigenous persons with disabilities, expressed their strong commitment to demand together their collective land rights as affirmed in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

More information: http://iphrdefenders.net/asia-regional-launch-global-call-action-indigenous-community-land-rights/

Support to land rights of Indigenous Women:

The statement of AIPP on Indigenous Women and Land Rights was issued on the occasion of the International Women’s Day on March 8, 2016 which was translated in Thai, Khmer and Burmese languages and widely circulated to AIPP members and networks.

More information: http://aippnet.org/strengthening-solidarity-for-indigenous-womens-land-rights-in-2016/

Campaign/communication materials:

WHAT ARE WE DOING NOW?

  • Producing more campaign materials: videos and translation of campaign materials to a number of national languages[3]
  • Providing technical assistance in relation to GCA activities targeting members and partners at the country level and local level when necessary;
  • Supporting community mapping for legal recognition in India; and mobilizing support for Cambodia and Malaysia;
  • Supporting local struggles in defense of land rights against mining, large dams, agribusiness, among others;
  • Documenting indigenous peoples’ sustainable resource management for awareness-raising and policy advocacy;
  • Integrating the GCA into all the programmes of AIPP and relevant events;
  • Circulating widely all relevant statements, publications, audio-visual materials at the regional and global levels;
  • Collaborating and building partnerships and networks for joint policy advocacy and support to community struggles and initiatives

WHAT’S NEXT?

  • Increase the number of awareness raising activities to mobilize more indigenous organizations and communities to sign the Call and make their land rights activities more visible;
  • Encourage National Human Rights Institutions to undertake Land Inquiries such as those done in Malaysia and Indonesia;
  • Conduct case studies on land rights issues i.e. large dams, mining and others related to trade and investments for policy advocacy and to generate support for indigenous communities;
  • Build and strengthen collaboration and networking at the national level to pursue policy advocacy on the recognition of land rights such as in Thailand and Nepal;
  • Strengthen collaboration and advocacy at the local and national levels for proper and immediate implementation of the legal collective land rights recognition in India, Malaysia, Cambodia and the Philippines, among others;
  • Prepare a report on the first year of the GCA campaign[4] covering achievements, activities, opportunities, challenges, as well as the way forward;
  • Develop concrete plan and strategies on the GCA as part of the overall strategic plan for 2017 -2020 to be adopted by the AIPP General Assembly on September, 2016;
  • Mobilize indigenous communities and organizations in Asia to take action together during the International Indigenous Peoples Day on 9 August, 2016 and beyond.

 

For more information, please CONTACT US:

Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact

www.aippnet.org

 

Joan Carling (Ms.)

Secretary General

joan@aippnet.org

 

Patricia Miranda Wattimena (Ms.)

Advocacy Coordinator

patricia@aippnet.org

 

 

 

[1] Data per 5 May, 2016

[2] 12 countries where AIPP members and partners are

[3] Target countries: Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, India, Philippines, Timor Leste

[4] To be published on March, 2017

Joint Statement by Dewan Adat Papua and Alifuru Council in the 15th session of the UNPFII

Joint Statement by Dewan Adat Papua and Alifuru Council

Item 3: Follow-up to the recommendation of the Permanent Forum

(d) Follow-up to the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples

 

Delivered by Leonard Imbiri, General Secretary of Dewan Adat Papua

 

Mr. Chairperson, Distinguish members of the Permanent Forum, distinguish delegates, indigenous brothers and sisters,

Congratulations to Mr. Alvaro Pop for your appointment as Chairperson, and our indigenous relations Dr. Claire Charter and Professor James Anaya as advisers to the PGA.

Mr. Chair,

The continuing threats to the cultural heritage of Indigenous Peoples summons a planned approach by the United Nations and its member States to comply with their international human rights obligations relating to indigenous peoples, including those under the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) and the commitments made in the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples outcome document.

We, the indigenous peoples of West Papua and South-Maluku are recognizing the significant role of the Forum in the advocacy for the implementation of the UN Declaration and the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples outcome document. We furthermore appreciate the commitments and reaffirmations made by Member States and UN agencies, however we are concerned that much work remains to be done for the full implementation of the outcome document within the United Nations, and its member States.

West Papua and South-Maluku are still consistently suffering from human rights violations, loss of their ancestral lands for extractive industries without their Free, Prior and informed consent, as they for example occur on the islands of Seram, Aru, and Romang in South-Maluku, and and Merauke in West Papua, and face grave violations when so-called development programs invade our indigenous territories. The right to freedom expression is really a big challenges and for example in West Papua, where 1,783 persons were arrested between 25 April and 2 May 2016 as they were organized peacefully demonstrations.

Mr. Chair,

The World Conference Outcome Document process is a positive established example that enabled a constructive dialogue between Member States and Indigenous Peoples. This is a partnership we appeal to the United Nations to continue, especially in light of the development of the system-wide action plan. We agree that it is high-time that the UN Declaration is streamlined and that regional and national UN mechanisms, including the regional commissions and the UN country teams, ensure that Indigenous peoples can meaningfully be part of the development and strategizing of programmes and activities in a structured and coherent manner.

 

The UN system must ensure the full and effective participation of indigenous peoples in this process in accordance with Article 18 of the UN Declaration, in this regard we reiterate previous calls for partnership and mutual respect between States and Indigenous Peoples, emphasizing that all parties must consult and cooperate in good faith with Indigenous Peoples allowing equal, direct and meaningful participation in existing dialogues in UN funds & specialized agencies, and the creation of mechanisms in processes that affect Indigenous peoples, the World Health Organization, International Maritime Organization, are such processes.

 

 

Therefore, we recommend to the Forum:

  • To promote and accommodate capacity development for member States and its officials on the UN Declaration, to achieve adequate national action plans, strategies, and measures for the implementation of the UN Declaration on the ground, and to overcome the obstacles in the advocacy for indigenous rights by member State officials in processes like UNFCCC.
  • That the members pro-actively advocate for the further development of a clear, concise, and complete System Wide Action Plan. Which includes mainstreaming the UN Declaration, not only in existing mechanisms and forums, but throughout the UN system to ensure that all agencies’ activities that affect indigenous peoples have a forum where indigenous peoples can participate in its decision making processes.

Thank you Mr. Chair,

 

Joint Statement of IPMSDL and its allied organizations and institutions in the 15th session of the UNPFII

JOINT STATEMENT ON “INDIGENOUS PEOPLES: CONFLICT, PEACE, AND RESOLUTION” (ITEM 4)

 Thank you. (This is a joint statement of the Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) and its allied organizations and institutions.)

We are appreciative that the Forum worked for this year’s theme – conflict, peace, and resolution that includes the urgent and growing concern of militarization – an issue often kept out of public information. However, in nearly every region of the world, militarization displaces and presents a direct threat to the ways of life and survival of Indigenous Peoples.

We see militarization in various forms such as in the encampment and occupation of indigenous villages to military combat operations or any so-called anti-terrorism actions, creation of paramilitary groups, construction of foreign or US military bases and testing facilities, and others.

Militarization has been and is a major cause of poverty among Indigenous Peoples worldwide.

It results in loss of lives, homes, and livelihood, as well as destruction and pollution of ancestral and sacred lands, material culture, and biodiversity and the environment.

Intensified military operations in indigenous territories leave communities without food, shelter or protection and with the killings of indigenous leaders force Indigenous Peoples to evacuate in other areas.The killing or assassination of indigenous and traditional leaders makes the community vulnerable to manipulation and coercion.

Militarization also makes women more vulnerable to sexual violence, harassment, and rape.

States legitimize all these through national security policies and anti-terrorism laws.

(Mr. Chairperson, our brothers and sisters have already spoken well on specific cases on the adverse impact of militarization, which I shall not repeat.)

We are concerned that the conflicts over valuable resources necessary for the survival of all shall further intensify and aggression against Indigenous Peoples shall escalate. Militarization shall play a major role for States and corporations to gain further control over Indigenous Peoples’ lands, territories, waters and all natural resources found therein, in violation of the right to free prior informed consent and self-determination (FPIC), and without restitution and compensation.

We are aware that SDG #16 addresses issues related to peace and justice. However, it fails to address the pressing concern of militarization of indigenous territories and communities.

In view of these, WE FORWARD THE FOLLOWING RECOMMENDATIONS for the UNPFII to,

 

  1. Urge the States with existing national internal security policies and anti-terrorism laws such as the Philippines’ Anti-Terrorism Law and India’s Armed Forces Special Powers Act 1958 to review such domestic standards and ensure that such measures are compliant with international human rights principles and international humanitarian laws;

 

  1. Support the call for the pullout of State security forces in indigenous territories; disband, and disarm paramilitary groups and private military contractors that threaten, harass, and intimidate Indigenous Peoples with the aim of breaking their collective unity and struggles for land, life, and justice. In line with this, hold a session in the next UNPFII on paramilitary forces.

 

  1. Look into the expansion of the definition of Official Development Aid (ODA), which include “peace and security” costs, as well as costs related to “countering violent extremism.” Considering the OECD-DAC definition of “violent extremism,”which means,“Promoting views which foment and incite violence in furtherance of particular beliefs, and foster hatred which might lead to intercommunity violence.” It is vague, ambiguous and all encompassing that Indigenous Peoples assertion of the right to self-determination and defense of ancestral lands can fall under the definition of “violent extremism.”The shift might also clear the way for the militarization of aid, and the use of aid against Indigenous Peoples struggles and resistance.

 

  1. Urge the States to fulfill their commitments for world peace starting with reviewing towards withdrawing foreign military aid that supports military activities in indigenous territories, and reallocation and realignment of military spending to support basic and fundamental human right such as on health, education, and housing especially for Indigenous Peoples.

 

  1. Support the proposals that promote the independence and build the integrity of national human rights institutions to monitor, investigate and recommend actions on State-perpetrated violations of Indigenous Peoples human rights.

 

  1. Recognize indigenous peoples’ right to self-determination and inherent rights over lands and resources as one of the key means of ending militarization and subsequent impacts on indigenous communities.

 

Thank you!

Joint Intervention of CISA and Yamasi People in the 15th session of the UNPFII

*Spanish Translation follows by Google Translate/Traducción Español seguido por Google Translate

Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues

15th Session – Theme: “Indigenous peoples: conflict, peace and resolution

New York, 9 – 20 May 2016.

 

Mr. Chairman,

Members of the Permanent Forum,

Indigenous Brothers and Sisters, may the Great Spirit guide us in this session.

Free, prior and informed consent is indispensable for world peace and security.

 

Therefore, in the name of the Consultancy of Indigenous Peoples in the North of Mexico, the International Community of Andean Wisdom (CISA) of Ecuador and the Yamasi People (USA), we respectfully present the following recommendations to the Permanent Forum:

 

  1. That the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues urge UN Member States in general and Mexico in particular to set out urgent actions and establish legal mechanisms for the implementation of their Constitutions on the right to prior consultation and the obtaining of the free, prior and informed consent of Indigenous Peoples, according to ILO Convention 169 of the International Labour Organization on Indigenous and Tribal Peoples in Independent Countries and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

 

With reference to the Mexican State, we ask: As a signatory to ILO Convention 169, to what extent has the Mexican State ethically fulfilled its commitments with reference to the prior consultation with Indigenous Peoples in all matters that concern them, such as legislative, political, administrative and development matters? To date, the mechanism used, the advisory services of the National Commission for Indigenous Peoples’ Development, has been inefficient, with inappropriate measures to achieve the aim of prior consultation. Good faith is lacking and the measures only serve to manipulate Indigenous Peoples, by working with particular groups in the communities who accept all of their demands.

 

  1. That the Permanent Forum request that Member States provide specific reports on the legal framework and procedures that exist for the granting of permits and concessions to national and international companies when they wish to develop projects on indigenous territories.

 

There are thousands of Indigenous Peoples who survive under an institutional colonial control that is aided by criminal transnational organizations (CTOs) through the colonial institutions of rape, prostitution, imprisonment and slavery, and under the protection of colonial laws. Therefore, we request that the Permanent Forum work together with the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in order to analyse the legal and economic aspects of the colonial institutions of rape, prostitution, imprisonment and slavery, their impact and possible solutions. EMRIP should report on the opportunities for implementing financial monitoring of Transnational Crime activities by Indigenous Peoples proscribed in UNTOC, which will reduce human rights abuses of Indigenous Peoples and neighbors.

 

  1. Our organizations are speaking out to request that this UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues urge the Mexican State to explain the disappearance of the 43 youths in Ayotzinapa, since it is a crime against Mexico and the world. Those youths are also our youths; those sons are also our sons.

 

Mr. Chairman:

When we speak of indigenous issues, we touch upon magic, beliefs, imagination, vision and the legitimate rights of original populations, the most ancient residents of the world, whose historical memory is found in each inhabitant of this planet, if we know it or not.

 

The patriarch and traditional singer, Don Juan Albañez Higuera (may he rest in peace), of the Pai Pai native indigenous community of the Santa Catarina Mission, in the Municipality of Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico, spoke about the relationship with the earth, the air, the clouds, water, and the sacred hills, dressed like women in white, which gave their people water, honey, deer, pine nuts and acorns, and to whom they gave thanks with their songs and ancestral dances.

 

We understand by this that indigenous territory has a spiritual conception with a sacred significance, that Indigenous Peoples see their territory as something essential to their existence and for which they consider they have been the guardians from time immemorial. Land, territory and Indigenous Peoples – the perfect ancestral trinomial – past, present and future seen through a special optical lens, difficult to understand for those who see these lands as goods, with a commercial and economic value. The habitat of these peoples is rich in natural resources and therefore attracts the attention of private interests and governments, who often receive the support of international agencies such as the World Bank or the Inter-American Development Bank, who are conscious of the acts and consequences that will harm Indigenous Peoples.

 

It is possible to cite many examples of destruction and the eviction of Indigenous Peoples and communities from their lands across the length and breadth of all continents, from Asia to America, including in the Sierra Tarahumara in the State of Chihuahua or in the native communities of Pai Pai, Cucapá, Kumiai, Kiliwa and Cochimí in the State of Baja California, Mexico.

 

Their demands stem from the decision to defend their natural resources, which constitute their livelihoods and their future as peoples; but this does not suffice for transnational companies to desist from their idea of taking control of these resources in order to convert them into goods that can be traded, with the support of national governments, who provide them with the necessary facilities.

 

On behalf of the Yamasi People, in North America we state:

 

UN Member States unilaterally decide to designate ‘sacrifice’ areas – areas to defoliate or poison with toxic substances for the good of “security”. The military solution is often the least productive response to tension or conflict. Indigenous Peoples propose solutions that allow opportunities for opposing sides to achieve their goals in good measure.  We propose a sharing approach, not an all-or-nothing approach.  Yamasi People, neighboring Indigenous Peoples, and our increasing number of colonial neighbors suffer from perpetual poisoning from nuclear radiation in the area of the Savannah River site, the largest nuclear weapons processing facility in the world.

 

The US has decreased security in the area of Savannah River site (SRS) by forcibly imposing on Indigenous and non-indigenous Peoples unwanted and unnecessary US-subsidized nuclear reactors in this same ‘sacrifice’ area. The US has decreased security in the area of SRS by soliciting nuclear waste from all over the world to traffick to original nations with SRS, with whom the US has no agreement for such activities.  World security is threatened by this concentration of nuclear material in a US-occupied area where the US continues to promote violence and refuses to negotiate peace with Indigenous Peoples.

 

Further, Yamasi People in particular are violently targeted by US-paid unsustainable developers. Yamasi are assaulted, raped, incarcerated, torture, trafficked, enslaved, and murdered by the US because we offer a more productive approach to peace and security planning. Because Yamasi People do not consent to the US unsustainable development agenda of building money-laundering facilities for transnational crime organizations, the US gives US federal tax money to the entities that the US has created to appropriate our identity. The US violates the reproductive rights of Yamasi women and girls instead of facilitating education and leadership development. Instead of negotiating with Yamasi leaders, the US generation after generation consciously and deliberately rapes Yamasi leaders.  This violence could end if the UN sanctioned Members practicing discrimination under the color of apartheid law, as the US does with US ‘Indian Law’.

 

Colonial authorities apply apartheid laws to authorize criminal transnational organizations to appropriate our indigenous identity for development purposes. When Indigenous Peoples oppose unsustainable development, the colonials—without the free, prior and informed consent of Indigenous Peoples—create shell companies that are often criminal transnational organizations posing as Indigenous Peoples in order to assign them rights to the development of Indigenous Peoples. The international community has for too many generations supported these activities, with the explicit support of the progenitors of the European Union and its system of slavery based on the appropriation of the rights to development of Indigenous Peoples.

 

This system of granting the development rights of Indigenous Peoples to shell corporations that are criminal transnational organizations (TCOs) threatens world security because this type of development that lacks free, prior and informed consent has consequences such as conflict and climate change.

 

Free prior and informed consent is essential for world peace and security.

 

 

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

 

·         Consultoría de los Pueblos Indígenas en el norte de México, A.C. (CPINM)  MEXICO
[Consultancy of Indigenous Peoples in the North of Mexico]

EDIFICIO TORRE ESTRELLA, Calle Luis Cabrera # 2071 – Despacho 206

Zona Urbana Río, Tijuana, Baja California, México. C.P. 22010

Tel. +52 (664) 6340371 Cel. +52 (664) 1968079

consultoria_indigena@yahoo.com.mx

 

  • Comunidad del Saber Andino (CISA) ECUADOR
    [Community of Andean Wisdom]

Almendros s/n planta alta

Quito, Ecuador.

Tel. + (593) 999298117

manpujarksisa@gmail.com

 

  • Yamasi People

Box 60033 Savannah MGeorgia a 31420  North America

Ph. + (912) 376 9786

international@yamasi.org

********************

Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues

15th Session – Theme: “Indigenous peoples: conflict, peace and resolution

New York, 9 – 20 May 2016.

 

 

Mr. Chairman,

Members of the Permanent Forum,

Indigenous Brothers and Sisters, may the Great Spirit guide us in this session.

 

Free, prior and informed consent is indispensable for world peace and security.

 

Therefore, in the name of the Consultancy of Indigenous Peoples in the North of Mexico, the International Community of Andean Wisdom (CISA) of Ecuador and the Yamasi People (USA), we respectfully present the following recommendations to the Permanent Forum:

 

  1. That the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues urge UN Member States in general and Mexico in particular to set out urgent actions and establish legal mechanisms for the implementation of their Constitutions on the right to prior consultation and the obtaining of the free, prior and informed consent of Indigenous Peoples, according to ILO Convention 169 of the International Labour Organization on Indigenous and Tribal Peoples in Independent Countries and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

 

With reference to the Mexican State, we ask: As a signatory to ILO Convention 169, to what extent has the Mexican State ethically fulfilled its commitments with reference to the prior consultation with Indigenous Peoples in all matters that concern them, such as legislative, political, administrative and development matters? To date, the mechanism used, the advisory services of the National Commission for Indigenous Peoples’ Development, has been inefficient, with inappropriate measures to achieve the aim of prior consultation. Good faith is lacking and the measures only serve to manipulate Indigenous Peoples, by working with particular groups in the communities who accept all of their demands.

 

  1. That the Permanent Forum request that Member States provide specific reports on the legal framework and procedures that exist for the granting of permits and concessions to national and international companies when they wish to develop projects on indigenous territories.

 

There are thousands of Indigenous Peoples who survive under an institutional colonial control that is aided by criminal transnational organizations (CTOs) through the colonial institutions of rape, prostitution, imprisonment and slavery, and under the protection of colonial laws. Therefore, we request that the Permanent Forum work together with the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in order to analyse the legal and economic aspects of the colonial institutions of rape, prostitution, imprisonment and slavery, their impact and possible solutions. EMRIP should report on the opportunities for implementing financial monitoring of Transnational Crime activities by Indigenous Peoples proscribed in UNTOC, which will reduce human rights abuses of Indigenous Peoples and neighbors.

 

  1. Our organizations are speaking out to request that this UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues urge the Mexican State to explain the disappearance of the 43 youths in Ayotzinapa, since it is a crime against Mexico and the world. Those youths are also our youths; those sons are also our sons.

 

Mr. Chairman:

When we speak of indigenous issues, we touch upon magic, beliefs, imagination, vision and the legitimate rights of original populations, the most ancient residents of the world, whose historical memory is found in each inhabitant of this planet, if we know it or not.

 

The patriarch and traditional singer, Don Juan Albañez Higuera (may he rest in peace), of the Pai Pai native indigenous community of the Santa Catarina Mission, in the Municipality of Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico, spoke about the relationship with the earth, the air, the clouds, water, and the sacred hills, dressed like women in white, which gave their people water, honey, deer, pine nuts and acorns, and to whom they gave thanks with their songs and ancestral dances.

 

We understand by this that indigenous territory has a spiritual conception with a sacred significance, that Indigenous Peoples see their territory as something essential to their existence and for which they consider they have been the guardians from time immemorial. Land, territory and Indigenous Peoples – the perfect ancestral trinomial – past, present and future seen through a special optical lens, difficult to understand for those who see these lands as goods, with a commercial and economic value. The habitat of these peoples is rich in natural resources and therefore attracts the attention of private interests and governments, who often receive the support of international agencies such as the World Bank or the Inter-American Development Bank, who are conscious of the acts and consequences that will harm Indigenous Peoples.

 

It is possible to cite many examples of destruction and the eviction of Indigenous Peoples and communities from their lands across the length and breadth of all continents, from Asia to America, including in the Sierra Tarahumara in the State of Chihuahua or in the native communities of Pai Pai, Cucapá, Kumiai, Kiliwa and Cochimí in the State of Baja California, Mexico.

 

Their demands stem from the decision to defend their natural resources, which constitute their livelihoods and their future as peoples; but this does not suffice for transnational companies to desist from their idea of taking control of these resources in order to convert them into goods that can be traded, with the support of national governments, who provide them with the necessary facilities.

 

On behalf of the Yamasi People, in North America we state:

 

UN Member States unilaterally decide to designate ‘sacrifice’ areas – areas to defoliate or poison with toxic substances for the good of “security”. The military solution is often the least productive response to tension or conflict. Indigenous Peoples propose solutions that allow opportunities for opposing sides to achieve their goals in good measure.  We propose a sharing approach, not an all-or-nothing approach.  Yamasi People, neighboring Indigenous Peoples, and our increasing number of colonial neighbors suffer from perpetual poisoning from nuclear radiation in the area of the Savannah River site, the largest nuclear weapons processing facility in the world.

 

The US has decreased security in the area of Savannah River site (SRS) by forcibly imposing on Indigenous and non-indigenous Peoples unwanted and unnecessary US-subsidized nuclear reactors in this same ‘sacrifice’ area. The US has decreased security in the area of SRS by soliciting nuclear waste from all over the world to traffick to original nations with SRS, with whom the US has no agreement for such activities.  World security is threatened by this concentration of nuclear material in a US-occupied area where the US continues to promote violence and refuses to negotiate peace with Indigenous Peoples.

 

Further, Yamasi People in particular are violently targeted by US-paid unsustainable developers. Yamasi are assaulted, raped, incarcerated, torture, trafficked, enslaved, and murdered by the US because we offer a more productive approach to peace and security planning. Because Yamasi People do not consent to the US unsustainable development agenda of building money-laundering facilities for transnational crime organizations, the US gives US federal tax money to the entities that the US has created to appropriate our identity. The US violates the reproductive rights of Yamasi women and girls instead of facilitating education and leadership development. Instead of negotiating with Yamasi leaders, the US generation after generation consciously and deliberately rapes Yamasi leaders.  This violence could end if the UN sanctioned Members practicing discrimination under the color of apartheid law, as the US does with US ‘Indian Law’.

 

Colonial authorities apply apartheid laws to authorize criminal transnational organizations to appropriate our indigenous identity for development purposes. When Indigenous Peoples oppose unsustainable development, the colonials—without the free, prior and informed consent of Indigenous Peoples—create shell companies that are often criminal transnational organizations posing as Indigenous Peoples in order to assign them rights to the development of Indigenous Peoples. The international community has for too many generations supported these activities, with the explicit support of the progenitors of the European Union and its system of slavery based on the appropriation of the rights to development of Indigenous Peoples.

 

This system of granting the development rights of Indigenous Peoples to shell corporations that are criminal transnational organizations (TCOs) threatens world security because this type of development that lacks free, prior and informed consent has consequences such as conflict and climate change.

 

Free prior and informed consent is essential for world peace and security.

 

 

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

 

·         Consultoría de los Pueblos Indígenas en el norte de México, A.C. (CPINM)  MEXICO
[Consultancy of Indigenous Peoples in the North of Mexico]

EDIFICIO TORRE ESTRELLA, Calle Luis Cabrera # 2071 – Despacho 206

Zona Urbana Río, Tijuana, Baja California, México. C.P. 22010

Tel. +52 (664) 6340371 Cel. +52 (664) 1968079

consultoria_indigena@yahoo.com.mx

 

  • Comunidad del Saber Andino (CISA) ECUADOR
    [Community of Andean Wisdom]

Almendros s/n planta alta

Quito, Ecuador.

Tel. + (593) 999298117

manpujarksisa@gmail.com

 

  • Yamasi People

Box 60033 Savannah MGeorgia a 31420  North America

Ph. + (912) 376 9786

international@yamasi.org

 

Invitation to International Conference on People’s Rights in the Philippines (ICPRP)

We extend the invitation from the organizers to participate in the International Conference for Peoples’ Rights in the Philippines (ICPRP2016) on 23-24 July 2016 in Davao City, Philippines. The ICPRP 2016 also involves participation to the:
· July 16 to 20, 2016 International Solidarity Missions (ISM) in areas in Mindanao, Cordillera, Eastern Visayas, Southern Tagalog, and Panay region; and
· July 21 to 22, 2016 2nd General Assembly of the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines (ICHRP) in Davao City, Philippines.
The ICPRP 2016 and its related-events is a good opportunity for exposure, learning and solidarity with other Indigenous Peoples, human rights and environment groups around the globe. Kindly click on this website for more information: http://www.humanrightsphilippines.net/events/international-conference-for-peoples-rights-in-the-philippines/

NPMHR intervention on the 15th session of the UNPFII

Paper presentation during the 15th Session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues 2016 on; “Indigenous Peoples; Conflict, Peace and Resolution” by Neingulo Krome, Secretary General, Naga Peoples Movement for Human Rights at the United Nations Headquarters at New York on the 17th of May 2016.

By: NeinguloKrome, Naga Peoples Movement for Human Rights

Respected Chair of the Permanent Forum, honorable Expert Members, distinguished Indigenous leaders and delegates, ladies and gentlemen.

Nagas are one of the indigenous peoples of Asia, who were independent and sovereign much like the ancient Greek city-states till Britishers found them and invaded their land in1832. Nagas fought back and resisted them till parts of their land were conquered and colonized in 1879 leaving a large area as un-administered and free from any kind of governance. So when the British Statutory Commission came to the then Naga Hills in 1929, the Nagas submitted their first written document, asking the British Government that the Naga Hills be withdrawn from the Reformed Scheme of India, in which the Naga Hills were included without their consent or knowledge, and to leave the Nagas alone to determine for themselves as in ancient times. Very unfortunately, when the British left the sub-continentand India started militarily occupying the Naga country, the British Government never even blinked its eyes not to talk of speaking a word to set records right.

So after India became Independent and Nagas refused to join the new Indian union and boycotted the first Indian General elections in 1952, Indian military troops were sent into the Naga Hills in 1953, to crush the Nagas. As a consequence, entire villages were burnt down,granaries, crops, cattle and domestic animals were not even spared. Woman raped, tortured and murdered in full view of family members and villagers and so on. The list is endless and dehumanizing.So to make a very long story short, let me just say that the political conflict of the Indigenous Nagasis known to be one of Asia’s longest running conflicts.

From then and until now, there have been numerous conflicts, also peace agreements and several attempts for resolution of the conflicts.  But all of these have failed to meaningfully serve its purpose, but ratherpromoted other more and newer conflicts.  For instance, there was the first Ceasefire, which came into effect on September 6, 1964and Peace negotiations were held between Naga leaders and the Government of Indiabut which could not resolve the conflict with India eventually and unilaterally breaking off the Ceasefire.

With resumptions of military operations on the Nagas, which saw more violence and destruction,pain and human sufferings and whichcameto the notice of the United Nations, the then Secretary General of the United Nations, Mr. Boutros Boutros Ghali, acknowledged and said; “there is human rights situation in Nagaland”.This revelation from the UN and other admissions made by a few Indian Army Generals, that the Naga problem cannot be solved militarily and must be solved politically, the 2nd Ceasefire came into effect on the 1st of August 1997.

It is almost 19 years now since the 2ndCeasefire had taken place and numerous Political negotiations have been going on without any concrete resolution.But nevertheless there have been positive outcomes in the various stages of negotiations despite the many frustrations. It was also only last year in August 3, 2015, that a FrameworkAgreement was also signed and which the Prime Minister of Indiahimself proudly announced to the international community in Dubaisaying that a final Peace settlement with the Nagas issue is at hand. But this also has not happened yet.

We do not know when a resolution to our Conflict will come which have been assured year after year. But what we do know is, that India is infested with all kinds of social and political unrest wherever Indigenous peoples live. Many Indigenous peoples even in North East India are also asserting their rights and have been fighting for their rights. The Naga political movement has been often branded as the “mother of all insurgency in North East India” which is not necessarily correct because of the nature in which Governments deals with Indigenous peoples and their issues. But whatever the case may be, nobody wants to live in a trouble-torn state of affairs all their lives but nobody will also easily give up their rights without some kind of respect to their human dignity. And therefore, almost every people’s movement in India is also watching how India is going to resolve the Naga issue. If the resolution of the Naga conflict is seen as “honourable and acceptable”, there are huge possibilities where other Indigenous Peoples movement may come forward for peaceful resolution as some are already doing. But if it is not, in all likelihood the situations in the already trouble-torn Indigenous areas may deteriorate.

Ladies and Gentlemen let me conclude by saying that the Indigenous Nagas fought and resisted the invading British colonials for 47 years;we were subjects of colonialism for 68 years. We have undergone all kinds of human sufferings and humiliation for another 50 years under military occupation of India.And we are now experiencing 19 years of Ceasefire.But during these last 19 years of Ceasefire and political negotiations we are also seeing psychological warfare, developmental aggressions,corruption and divisions at all levels of the society, while the energy of the peace loving citizens are drained just in trying to keep the peace process alive. Notwithstanding all of the above, and in the midst of all the turmoil, our lands and people weredivided into nation states of India and Burma (now Myanmar) and within India, into different states of Nagaland, Manipur, Assam and Arunachal Pradesh without our knowledge or consent which in itself is a manifestation of the colonial policy of “Divide and Rule” being imposed on us forcefully.

Finally, in line with the experiences of Nagas and other indigenous peoples of North East India, which are common to other indigenous peoples in Asia and perhaps around the world, we can draw some of the following common issues and recommendations:

  1. Indigenous peoples in Asia have faced long-standing conflicts beginning with colonial powers and now with States under which their territories fall. To resolve these conflicts, rights of indigenous peoples to self-determination need to be respected as per Articles 3 and 4 of the UNDRIP so that they can freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development.
  2. Besides political conflicts, development aggression of States in indigenous territories is adding to the worsening situation of indigenous peoples. Indigenous peoples’ rights to lands, territories and resources as guaranteed mainlyin Articles 26, 27, 28, 30 and 32 of the UNDRIP, including right against forced military activities in their lands should be fully implemented to prevent and resolve further land-related conflicts of indigenous peoples.
  3. International borders have divided indigenous peoples. This has denied them the right to maintain and develop contacts, relations and cooperation, including activities for cultural, political, economic and social purposes, with their own members as well as other peoples across borders, as required under Article 36 of the UNDRIP. States need to take more effective measures to implement this right in conjunction with the indigenous peoples.

 

Thank you

 

CRAM intervention on the 15th session of the UNPFII

15th Session of UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, UN HQ, 9 – 20 May 2016  

Agenda 4: implementation of the Six mandates areas of UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues: Focus on Human Rights

Respected Chair, I am Jiten Yumnam, speaking on behalf of the Centre for Research and Advocacy, Manipur, an indigenous peoples’ human rights organization.

Manipur in India’s North East has for long been afflicted with an armed conflict premised on its indigenous peoples’ movement for self-determination to reject India’s forced merger of Manipur on 15 October 1949. The self-determination efforts of indigenous peoples of Manipur, are responded militarily with promulgation of emergency laws, such as the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958 (AFSPA) that conferred extra ordinary powers to the armed forces of Government of India, including using force on mere suspicion and to arrest people without warrant.  Other notorious and draconian laws applied in Manipur against indigenous peoples, includes the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, 1967, the National Security Act, 1980 etc, the Indian Penal Code etc. The AFSPA, 1958declared Manipur entirely as a disturbed state, allowing the full scale deployment and militarization of Indian Armed Forces in Indigenous peoples land and territory in Manipur, in pretext of subduing indigenous resistance groups for self-determination. The militarization processes has led to intense violation of Human rights, ranging from violation of Right to Life and facilitated Land grabbing to facilitating development onslaught in Manipur, reinforcing State’s efforts to undermine peoples’ right to self-determination.

For long under the AFSPA, 1958, Manipur reels outside the framework of protection guaranteed by the International Human Right Law. More than 1500 fully confirmed cases of Extra Judicial Executions has been documented in Manipur from 1980’s till 2012, as documented by the Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights in Manipur and the UN. The UN special mandate holders, namely, the Special Rapporteur on human rights defenders, Ms. Margaret Sekaggya and the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Mr. Christoff Heyns during their visits in India’s North East in 2011 and 2012, have called for repeal of AFSPA, 1958 and referred to it as a unlawful implementation and violation of International Law in Manipur.

One of the most direct impacts of militarization and subjugation of indigenous peoples’ self-determination movement in Manipur is on women and children. There are countless victims of sexual harassment committed by Indian security forces. The sexual harassment of Chanu Rose in Ukhrul District, the rape of Mercy Kabui of Lamdan Village by 112 Battalion Central Reserve Police Force on 19 July 2000, rape of Ms. Nandeibam Sanjit of Jiribam Uchanthol by personnel of 12th Granadier Rifles on 4 October 2003, which led to her suicide and the rape and murder of Miss Thangjam Manorama on 11 July 2004 by personnel of the 17th Assam Rifles are some of the infamous cases of rape cases in Manipur. The denial of justice, failure to prosecute and punish armed forces personnel involved in violations led to impunity.  Ms. Radhika Coomaraswamy, former Special Rapporteur, also recorded many individual complaints of rape committed by security forces in Manipur in her report of 27 January 2000. (E/CN.4/2000/68/Add.1, Paragraphs 49-66).

Armed and resource conflict: An increased alarming reality associated with the armed conflict situation in Manipur and which complicates the persisting armed conflict is the aggressive plunder of land and natural resources. The violation of right to self-determination of indigenous peoples in Manipur is lucid clear in the pattern of aggressive push of corporate led development and associated militarism.

A serious challenge with developmental processes in Manipur is the failure to recognize the right to self-determination and self-determined development of indigenous peoples over their land and resources.

The ongoing efforts to complete Mapithel dam by blocking the Thoubal River and filling up Mapithel dam reservoir and the proposed move to construct the 1500 MW Tipaimukh Multipurpose Hydroelectric Project, and signing of four MoUs on four mega dams on 28 August 2014, without the free, prior and informed consent of indigenous communities constitute a clear effort to undermine indigenous peoples self-determination over their land and resources. The Tipaimukh dam will submerge more than 27,000 hectares of forest land and will destroy livelihood sources of indigenous communities of Manipur. Again, theGovernment of India granted license to Jubilant Oil and Gas Private Limited, a Dutch company, for exploration and drilling works2 in two oil blocks in Manipur without peoples’ consent and without considering the larger implications on indigenous peoples’ way of life, livelihood, intergenerational survival etc.The North East India Hydrocarbon vision, 2030 has also been framed without indigenous peoples consent and will led to expropriation of peoples land and resources.

Indian paramilitary forces, operating under the AFSPA, 1958, to counter self-determination movements are also deployed and involved in introducing unsustainable projects that led to confiscation and destruction of agriculture land, forest and other resources of Manipur. Militarization is also associated with introduction of unsustainable development projects, as evident by the militarization of Mapithel Dam site, Loktak Project site, Khuga Dam etc. Indigenous Peoples and women’s call for protection of productive agricultural land for prolonged economic subsistence and for sustainable and people friendly development are also met with brute and violent repression of indigenous women[1].

Three people, including women were killed and 25 people were injured in December 2005, when a combined team of Indian paramilitary forces, the Border Security Forces and the Indian Reserve Battalion opened fired on villagers affected by the Khuga Dam, who were demanding just compensation, in Churachandpur District of Manipur. On 3 November 2008, more than forty people, mostly women affected by the Mapithel Dam, demanding their basic rights were brutality beaten and inhumanely tortured by the Indian Reserve Battalion and the Manipur Police. The injured were all women belonging to different communities of Manipur, the Meitei, the Nagas and the Kukis. Ms. Lungmila AS of Louphong Village, Ukhrul District, was seriously injured in firing of Tear Gas canister and continues to remain in dysfunctional mental state till today. Indeed the former UN Special Rapporteur on Indigenous Peoples Rights, Mr. James Anaya expressed strong condemnation with the Mapithel dam construction and the militarization process in 2008. The Indian State continues to insist on militarization process to undermine indigenous peoples’ efforts for self-determination over their land and has disturbed the profound relationships of Indigenous peoples in Manipur with their lands and territories, both physically and spiritually.

Recommendations: I would like to urge the UN Permanent Forum to urge upon the Government of India to:

  • Recognize the self-determined rights of indigenous peoples of Manipur as outlined in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, 2007.
  • Repeal the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958 and end all forms of militarization in Manipur.
  • Recognize indigenous peoples’ fundamental rights, especially “Right to Life & Justice remedy”.
  • Recognize indigenous peoples’ right to self-determined development with full recognition of their rights over their land and resources.
  • Enforce moratorium on all mega development projects which failed to take the free, prior and informed consent of indigenous communities of Manipur.
  • Repeal all policies and acts that foster privatization and corporatization of communities land such as the Manipur Hydro Policy, 2012, the Manipur Loktak Lake Protection Act, 2006 etc.
  • Stop Oil Exploration and Drilling by Jubilant Energy and other oil companies in Manipur
  • Stop construction of Mapithel dam.Decommission Ithai Barrage of the 105 MW Loktak HEP.Revoke the MoUs signed on 28 August, 2014 for construction of 60 MW Irang HEP project, 67 MW Khongnem-Chakha Hydro Electric Project, 190 MW Pabram Hydro Electric at Barak River and 51 MW Tuivai HEP projects in the Barak River basin.

 

CPA Intervention on the 15th session of UNPFII

UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues Fifteenth Session

9-20 May 2016, New York

 Intervention on Agenda Item 4: Implementation of the six mandated areas of the Permanent Forum with reference to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

By: Sarah Dekdeken, CORDILLERA PEOPLES ALLIANCE (Philippines)

 Thank you Mister Chair for this opportunity to speak. Warm greetings everyone!

I represent the Cordillera Peoples Alliance, Philippines, which has consistently participated in the Permanent Forum since its First Session in 2002, recognizing theimportant role of the Forum in advancing indigenous peoples’ rights. The Forum has allowed us to raise the issues and concernsof the Igorots and other indigenous peoples of the Philippines.We have forwarded numerous recommendations to the Permanent Forum, in line with our struggle to defend our rights to land and resources that are being robbedby the State and foreign corporations.

However, we are deeply alarmed that after 14 sessions of the Permanent Forum, and nine years since the adoption of the UNDeclaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), the plight of indigenous peoples in the Philippines has turned from bad to worse. The Philippine government enacted the Indigenous Peoples Rights Act and established the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples(NCIP) supposedly to promote the rights and welfare of Philippine indigenous peoples. But these have been proven inutile in protecting our rights. In fact, the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples has served as an instrument in violating IP rights. And the UNDRIP and previous recommendations of the Permanent Forum have not been implemented at all.

Instead, the Philippine government continuesits reign of terror,committingcrimes against indigenous peoples, and outrightly violating our collective rights to our ancestral lands and plunder of our resources through destructive mining and energy projects. Its counter-insurgency programOplanBayanihan has resulted inthe militarization of our communities, extrajudicial killings,development aggression and other human rights violations committed with impunityagainst indigenous peoples.UnderPresident Benigno Aquino’s administration, at least one indigenous person is killed every month, with a total of more than90 victims from July 2010 to April 2016.

To cite a few recent cases:

  • In April 2016, the Vice Chairperson of the Cordillera Peoples Alliance, Mr. Xavier Akien,experienced death threatsthrough surveillance by armed men, which, in our experience, often leads to extrajudicial killing or enforced disappearance.
  • On April 1, 2016, in Kidapawan, Southern Philippines,the government brutally responded to thedemand for food aid by more than five thousand farmers andLumad indigenous peopleswith guns and bullets, leaving 2 farmers dead, more than 70 people wounded, and hundreds arrested.Indigenous peoples bear the brunt of climate change, while suffering the negative impacts of corporate mining, extractive industriesand government neglect of basic social services. In the past few months, El Nino has left hundreds of farmers’ families hungry, yet the Philippine government heartlessly denied them the basic human right to food.
  • In 2015, around five thousandLumad indigenous people in Mindanao fled their homes due to military operations, harassment and forced recruitment by paramilitary groups.
  • Indigenous schools run by non-government organizationscontinue to be attacked by State military forces and paramilitary groups,thereby depriving indigenous children and youth of the right to education.
  • Discrimination of indigenous peoples was again proven in the government’s denial of our participation to the Party List System in the recently concluded national elections.

These are just a few of the ethnocidal acts committed against indigenous peoples, which reflectthe worsening situationsimilarly experiencedby indigenous peoples around the world. We thus urge the Permanent Forum to take immediate and decisive steps to end the extrajudicial killing and indigenous peoples’ rights violations, and the State-driven misery faced by indigenous peoples in the Philippines.

We recommend:

  • That the Permanent Forum establish mechanisms to monitor and ensure the implementation of UNDRIP,and its recommendations at the country level.
  • That the Philippine Government take steps to respect and protectindigenous peoples’ rights to lands, resources, social and economic development, cultural integrity, education and health.
  • Thatoppressive laws, policies and programs thatdisplaceour communities, plunder our resources,destroy our environment,hinder our development,and violate our national sovereigntybe repealed/scrapped, such as the Philippine Mining Act of 1995, OplanBayanihan, Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement, among others.
  • Thatthe Philippine Governmentbe urged to comply with its obligations under International Humanitarian Law, the UNDRIP, and other international human rights instruments to which the Philippine government is a signatory.

 

Thank you for your attention.

UPDATE on UNPFII 2016

Amazon Women of Ecuador at UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues
“In Ecuador, we created an Amazon Women’s Alliance to defend our territory”
– Gloria Ushigua, President, Ashiñwaka
Yesterady at United Nations Headquarters, Alicia Cahuiya (Vice President of NAWE, the Waorani Nation of Ecuador) and Gloria Ushigua (President of Ashiñwaka, the Sápara Women’s association) from the Ecuadorian Amazon spoke out against the threats to Indigenous rights due to extractive industries in their lands and territories.

With support from Land is Life and Acción Ecológica, the two leaders traveled to New York for the 15th Session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. They are here to request a meeting with the Permanent Mission of China to the UN following the signing of two new oil projects between the Ecuadorian government and Chinese oil companies to explore oil reserves in their ancestral territories without their free, prior and informed consent (FPIC).

“We are here to defend our rights because they are contaminating our lands and rivers… and the Ecuadorian government is not defending the rights of the Indigenous Peoples living in voluntary isolation, the Taromenane”
– Alicia Cahuiya, Vice President of NAWE
The Amazonian women were also joined in solidarity by Indigenous leaders from North America and Asia. “Our strength is the unity of the communities affected by extractive actions,” declared Beverly Longid of Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation.

Ms. Cahuiya and Ms. Ushigua read the letter to the Chinese Mission to the UN and are hoping to arrange a meeting in the coming days. They expect that United Nations system will listen to their voices and fully respect their rights.

The Amazonian women launched an emergency appeal from within the UN to seek international solidarity of all Indigenous Peoples, citizens and governments around the world to defend their traditional cultures and territories.

Please find the letter to the Chinese Mission in EnglishSpanish and Chinese.