Press Release Guyana - Indigenous leaders harassed for exercising their constitutional rights; criticized for demanding respect for their inherent land rights

Indigenous leaders, who chose to exercise their right to free speech as guaranteed in the Constitution of Guyana, are now being targeted by the government as a direct result of the public statement by participants at the Workshop on Indigenous Peoples' Rights, Extractive Industries and National Development Policies in Guyana. (See the public statement under related reports)Press Release issued by the Amerindian Peoples Association (APA)

Press Release - Guyana - Indigenous Peoples Demand Action on Land Rights, Consent Issues

At a week-long workshop on 'Indigenous Peoples' Rights, Extractive Industries and National Development Policies in Guyana' from 2-8 March 2010, the topics covered were: indigenous peoples' right to free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) and the extractive sector, the Government of Guyana's recent Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) and REDD+ policies. Amerindian leaders shared their experiences of both public-sector and private development projects and proposals within their territories.

Sabah, Malaysia: Letter to Government ministers about the proposed Kaiduan Dam and response from Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment

In support of the potentially affected communities, FPP's letter expresses concerns about the feasibility study, and requests the Government's to make a commitment to conduct full, participatory consultations with the communities and the public before reaching a decision. Read the letter sent to the Chief Minister's Office, Minister of Infrastructure Development and Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment, 8 March 2010.The Minister's reply, dated 10 March 2010, states that no official evaluation has yet taken place, and that proper procedures will be observed before the State Government makes any decision. Read the Minister's response.

Gains amidst the gloom at Copenhagen?

There have been many commentaries and analyses of the outcome of the 15th Conference of the Parties (COP15) of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that took place in Copenhagen last December. The 'Accord' produced was cooked up outside the formal sessions by a minority of governments and was not adopted formally by the Conference of the Parties, but only 'noted' by them. It fell short of recognising the challenges and the urgent need to set up binding and fair commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while providing the financial and technological support for a transition toward low-carbon energy paths.

FPP: Rights, forests and climate briefing series - Democratic Republic of Congo: Consultation with indigenous peoples and others affected by REDD initiatives in the DRC - an example of best practice?

The Democratic Republic of Congo has recently submitted its Readiness Preparation Proposal for REDD (R-PP) to the World Bank's Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF). Considering that a successful outcome relies on ensuring effective participation by forest communities, indigenous peoples and civil society across the vast extent of the DRC's rainforest, this briefing asks: has the DRC followed best practice in this respect, as a UN agency is now claiming?

Read the Briefing by Forest Peoples Programme (FPP), Centre d'accompagnement des Autochtones Pygmées et Minoritaires Vulnérables (CAMV) and Cercle pour la Défense de l'Environnement (CEDEN).

Pressure mounts on Sarawak natives

Sarawak is again in the news as the relentless pressure on the 'native peoples' intensifies. Logging operations continue to push into the Dayak peoples' ancestral territories, extending deep into the lands of the Penan people, up into the Kelabit highlands and right up to the sources of the Rajang river. Logging tracks even extend over the border into Indonesia. Meanwhile on the coast and in the lower-lying parts of the State, extensive tracts of Dayak land are being converted to oil palm plantations.

Megaprojects in the Peruvian Amazon threaten Amazon territories and violate the rights of indigenous peoples: the Flor De Ucayali case

Throughout the Amazon basin indigenous peoples are threatened by major large-scale dam, road and energy developments being planned under the controversial Inter-American Development Bank- (IDB) assisted 'Initiative for the Integration of the Regional Infrastructure of South America' (IIRSA). Yet these plans are being developed behind closed doors with little public participation - often the most recent public information dates back to 2004! This bulletin looks at alarming proposals under IIRSA that threaten Shipibo territory and indigenous peoples living in voluntary isolation in the Peruvian Amazon.

Ugandan Batwa meet with government leaders in Kampala

In December 2009, the Batwa community in south-west Uganda and their own representative organisation, the United Organisation of Batwa Development in Uganda (UOBDU), continued their efforts to secure their rights by holding a series of meetings with local and national level government representatives.