1 October 2019 saw a historic moment in Suriname. Two draft laws were submitted to the Minister of Regional Development: a proposal for a Collective Rights Act for Indigenous and Tribal Peoples in Suriname (including land rights), and a proposal for an amendment of the constitution.
In Suriname, South America, the International Day of Indigenous Peoples (9 August) is traditionally celebrated in the palm garden in the capital, Paramaribo. People from all tribes gather here, and sell their foods and handicrafts.
A statement made to the UN Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (EMRIP) on behalf of a group of organisations working on a collaborative initiative - the Indigenous Navigator.
Forest Peoples Programme and a delegation of indigenous peoples’ leaders from Guyana, Suriname, Peru, Panama and Kenya attended the Rio+20 Indigenous Peoples’ International Conference on Self-Sustainable Development and Self-Determination from 17-19 June and the formal Rio+20 intergovernmental meeting from 20-22 June 2012.
O Forest Peoples Programme e uma delegação de líderes indígenas da Guiana, Suriname, Peru, Panamá e Quênia participaram da Conferência Internacional Rio+20 dos Povos Indígenas sobre Autodeterminação e Desenvolvimento Sustentável, realizada entre 17 e 19 de junho, e da cúpula intergovernamental formal da Rio +20, realizada entre 20 e 22 de junho de 2012. Os delegados também participaram da reunião Karioca II, da Cúpula dos Povos, e estiveram envolvidos com o Dia de Ação Global no dia 20 de junho.
Depois de uma semana intensa, tomada por entrevistas coletivas, apresentações, marchas e participação em reuniões oficiais e eventos paralelos, o FPP pediu aos delegados indígenas que comentassem sobre as suas experiências na Rio+20 e outras questões relacionadas à mesma. Apresentamos alguns trechos dessas entrevistas:
Indigenous and tribal peoples of Suriname still open to dialogue
By the Association of Indigenous Village Leaders in Suriname (VIDS)
A conference organised by the Government of Suriname on 21 and 22 October 2011, which was meant to clarify positions and proposals on land rights and build mutual understanding between the Government and indigenous and tribal (maroon) peoples, ended in a very abrupt manner. The Government even called it “a disaster” on 23 October 2011. Surprised by the massive solidarity and collaboration between the indigenous and tribal peoples of Suriname, and in a move that showed great disrespect to traditional leaders who had traveled long distances to attend the conference, the President of Suriname decided to close the conference early following the indigenous and tribal peoples’ presentation of their joint position on land and resource rights. With this, all subsequent dialogue between the indigenous and tribal peoples and the government has ceased.
In October 2011, Forest Peoples Programme (FPP) conducted a survey of our local partners asking them to pinpoint key experiences and emerging lessons learned in relation to REDD+ and rights issues over the last three years. Partners who contributed include the Centre for Environment and Development (CED) and Association Okani (Cameroon), CEDEN (DRC), Foundation for the Promotion of Traditional Knowledge (Panama), Amerindian Peoples Association (Guyana), Association of Village Leaders in Suriname, Association of Saamaka Authorities (Suriname), AIDESEP (Peru), Federation for the Self-Determination of Indigenous Peoples (Paraguay) and Scale-up, Pusaka and FPP field staff (Indonesia). Observations and lessons are also drawn from workshops with local partners, field studies and issues stemming from indigenous peoples’ representatives in dialogues with national and international REDD+ policy-makers. Key observations and lessons are summarised below.
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights adopts precautionary measures in favour of the indigenous community of Maho in Suriname. Precautionary measures are granted in situations where there is a threat of irreparable harm.