Inter Mountain Peoples’ Education and Culture in Thailand Association (IMPECT) are looking for Anthropology, Education and other human sciences students interested in volunteering 7 weeks of their time in an indigenous community school in Northern Thailand. If you want to have a real encounter with indigenous people in Thailand, while contributing towards better education for its children, this assignment is for you. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to live in a small community and be hosted by one of its families.
The following article was published by IUCN here: http://www.iucn.org/about/union/commissions/ceesp/?8772/Indigenous-peoples-r
Stefan Disko (International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs), TILCEPA member Helen Tugendhat (Forest Peoples Programme)
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 2010, the Teribe indigenous people of Costa Rica decided to speak out in response to what they consider gross human rights violations to their people in relation to the proposed Diquís Dam in the country’s South Pacific region. This project will lead to the partial flooding of two indigenous territories and other grave impacts on 5 indigenous territories. In defence of their rights, the Teribe filed their first claim to the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) in mid 2010 and to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. These actions have resulted in progress both nationally and internationally.
Globally oil palm plantations continue to expand at a rapid rate. World leader, Indonesia, has raced past Malaysia to become the number one producer. Latest data from the Indonesian watchdog NGO, SawitWatch, suggests that oil palm plantations in Indonesia now cover 11 million hectares, up from 6 million hectares only five years ago. New plantings are spreading to the smaller islands of the archipelago and to the less developed areas of eastern Indonesia. Hopes that a Presidential promise of a 2 year moratorium on forest clearance would slow the crop’s expansion – part of a deal to reduce green house gas emissions - have also evaporated as the government has excepted areas where preliminary permits have already been handed out.
At the recent meeting of the Convention on Biological Diversity’s (CBD) Working Group on traditional knowledge, innovations and practices (Article 8(j) and Related Provisions) , which took place in Montreal, Canada, from 31October to 4 November 2011, Forest Peoples Programme and indigenous and local community partners, alongside the International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity (IIFB), engaged in discussions with delegates and others about the development of a new “Plan of Action on Customary Sustainable Use”. This Plan of Action is intended to become a new major component of the already existing Programme of Work that serves to preserve, respect and maintain indigenous peoples’ and local communities’ traditional knowledge, innovations and practices that are related to sustainable use and conservation of biodiversity.
In March 2011, the World Bank launched a controversial proposal that would allow projects within so-called programmatic loans to borrower countries to go ahead without application of the Bank’s specific safeguard policies. Civil society organisations and indigenous peoples have raised major concerns about this initiative, which they fear in its current form would reduce the accountability of World Bank finance and could trigger a worldwide race to the bottom in social and environmental standards among multilateral and regional development banks.
FPP has published two new publications; 'Oil Palm Expansion in South East Asia: Trends and implications for local communities and indigenous peoples' and 'Divers paths to justice: Legal pluralism and the rights of indigenous peoples in Southeast Asia'.
This report compiled by national and regional indigenous organisations in Peru (AIDESEP, FENAMAD, CARE) and the Forest Peoples Programme (FPP), collates indigenous peoples’ experiences with REDD policies and projects in the Peruvian Amazon. The report analyses the policies and strategies of the Peruvian government, examines the roles of international agencies and scrutinises pilot REDD initiatives already underway in indigenous territories.
At its 50th Session, the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) adopted a resolution condemning the recent decision of the World Heritage Committee to inscribe Lake Bogoria in Kenya on the World Heritage List. The issue at stake was the almost complete lack of involvement of the Endorois (the indigenous owners of the territory) in the decision-making process. This is particularly problematic in light of the African Commission’s earlier decision on the case of Centre for Minority Rights Development (Kenya) and Minority Rights Group International on behalf of Endorois Welfare Council v Kenya adopted at the 46th Ordinary Session held from 11–25 November 2009 in Banjul, The Gambia, and endorsed by the Heads of State and Government of the African Union in February 2010. This earlier decision and the recent resolution both emphasize that the principle of Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) must be adhered to in the lands and territories of indigenous peoples. Failing to involve indigenous peoples in decision-making processes and failing to obtain Free, Prior and Informed Consent constitutes a violation of their right to development under Article 22 of the African Charter, and other international laws.
Many statements from indigenous peoples organisations were made on the occasion of the 50th African Commission session held in Banjul in October 2011. As well as the implementation of the 2010 African Commission’s decision regarding the Endorois in Kenya, the situation of indigenous women in Burundi and Kenya were addressed. Burundi was also examined under the state reporting procedure, which raised issues pertaining to the rights of indigenous peoples.
Press briefing on new publication 'The reality of REDD+ in Peru: Between theory and practice - Indigenous Amazonian Peoples analyses and alternatives' compiled by AIDESEP, FENAMAD, CARE (regional and national indigenous organisations) and FPP, at the UNFCCC COP17 in Durban, South Africa.
Sir/Madame President, distinguished delegates,
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.
The articles and related information in this special edition e-bulletin contain a number of findings and pinpoint issues that are pertinent to the discussions and negotiations that will take place in Durban in relation to REDD+. Some key elements that require due consideration by Parties and policy-makers, include, inter alia, the need to: