24-07-11

UNESCO includes Koongarra uranium deposit in Kakadu National Park

After struggling for more than 30 years to protect the Koongarra region from the threat of uranium mining, Kakadu Traditional owners can breathe a welcomed sigh of relief. On June 27 the World Heritage Committee announced that it would redraw the borders of the  Kakadu National Park to include Koongarra.

The 1,228 hectare region was originally excluded from the National Park in 1979, because of the uranium deposits there. Even though no mineral exploration ever took place, the possibility has remained a major concern to Traditional owners. Koongarra is the site of at least 50,000 years of Indigenous history and culture.

In its decision to modify the boundaries of Kakadu, the World Heritage Committee called on the government to assess the state of conservation in Koongarra and expedite the process of protecting it "as soon as possible, in collaboration with the traditional landowners of the property". The Committee noted that "the application of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Protection Act 1999" will result in "an absolute prohibition of mining" in Koongarra.

Jeffrey Lee, the sole survivor of the Djok clan (Gundjeihmi) and Custodian of Koongarra, attended the 35th session of the World Heritage Committee in Paris, alongside representatives of the Mirarr.

"I would like to thank the World Heritage Committee for inscribing Koongarra, my country, on the World Heritage List. Thank you for talking about this and for listening to my words. I have waited a very long time for this to happen and it comes as a very happy feeling for me to see all of us looking after this place," said Jeffrey Lee, in a  statement addressed to the Committee.

"I am supported by all the Bininj clans of Kakadu and most particularly by neighbouring clans such as the Mirarr People, through their representative body the Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation, representatives of which are here with me at this meeting," continued Lee.

"I want to ensure that the traditional laws, customs, sites, bush tucker,trees, plants and water at Koongarra stay the same as when they were passed on to me by my father and great-grandfather. Inscribing the land at Koongarra as World Heritage is an important step in making this protection lasting and real."

The Mirarr also took a moment to thank the Committee and honour Lee's tireless efforts. "Jeffrey speaks for his country and we support him. He has always said no to mining at Koongarra. He wants to see that country protected as a part of Kakadu and we absolutely support him in that."

"Kakadu is Aboriginal land, Australia’s largest National Park and one of the world's valued places. This decision is a key step towards seeing the bipartisan election promise of Koongarra's protection realized. The Mirarr are actively committed to supporting Mr Lee in speaking for his country."

Australia Federal Environment Minister Tony Burke  took a moment as well, to celebrate the decision and congratulate the Traditional Owners.

One group that didn't get any praise--and rightfully so--is the Paris-based nuclear energy giant AREVA. The company, who has a mineral lease in the Koongarra area, tried to stop the Committee from considering the request to expand the National Park. Fortunately, the federal Labor party rejected the company's request.

While Koongarra is one step closer to being secured from the likes of AREVA, the London Mining Network observes that Rio Tinto is still planning to expand its operation at the huge Ranger deposit, which is inside Kakadu.

The Ranger mine has been wrought with troubles ever since it went into operation in 1981. According to the Environment Centre, "over 100 environmental errors and breaches of operating codes have been recorded" since then. The mine has been particularly plagued with water management problems, which a major concern for the Mirarr, since "some 12 million litres of radioactive contaminated water lies on site at the Ranger Uranium Mine, upstream of Indigenous communities and internationally recognized Ramsar listed wetlands," explained Mirarr Elder Yvonne Margarula in her letter to UN Secretary-General Ban ki-Moon.

"The ongoing operations at Ranger, combined with renewed pressure for expansion, threaten the natural and cultural values for which Kakadu is listed as World Heritage," said Justin O'Brien, executive officer of the Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation.

In addition to their concerns with the Ranger mine, the Mirarr people are still eager to see the government bring the nearby Jabiluka uranium deposit into Kakadu, like it has done for Koongarra.

Exploitation of the deposit was halted in 1998, following an eight-month blockade by thousands of indigenous and non-indigenous protesters.

The company eventually signed the "Jabiluka Long-Term Care and Maintenance Agreement" which guaranteed that the Mirarr would have veto rights over any future 'development' at Jabiluka. Even though the agreement is reassuring, the Mirarr want to take it one step further by permanently securing the site.

source : Intercontinental Cry

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The (World Eskimo-Indian) Games have begun

The games are in full sway in Fairbanks, Alaska, home of the World Eskimo-Indian Olympics, featuring some of the most awesome, and unusual, competitions you've likely never heard of.

The event, in its 50th year, is centered around competitions based on techniques and activities tied to surviving in the Arctic.

There’s the four-man carry, the blanket toss and even an ear-pulling competition.

The event is billed as a four-day celebration of Eskimo culture and games, according to the World Eskimo-Indian Olympics website. The games' logo, six interlocked rings, represents Alaska's six major tribes - Aleut, Athabascan, Haida, Inupiaq, Tlingit, Tsimpsian and Yup'ik  – the website said.

The games run through Saturday.

Ninety-year-old Poldine Carlo is this year’s keeper of the flame, er, seal oil lamp, which is traditionally lit by the winner of the Race of the Torch, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports.

“I think it’s wonderful when all of the Native people get together each year,” Carlo told the News-Miner. “This year, it’s missing some people my age. It’s kind of sad in a way when you think of that, but on the other hand, you’re happy, too, for the new people,” she was quoted as saying.

Source : CNN

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Press Release: A Victory for Protection of Sogorea Te

After 98 days and nights of a continuous prayer vigil, the Committee to Protect Glen Cove is pleased to announce a victory in the struggle to protect the sacred grounds of Sogorea Te/Glen Cove.

Yesterday, the Yocha Dehe and Cortina tribes established a cultural easement and settlement agreement with the City of Vallejo and the Greater Vallejo Recreation District (GVRD). The agreement sets a legal precedent for granting Native peoples jurisdiction over their sacred sites and ancestral lands. The cultural easement forever guarantees that the Yocha Dehe and Cortina tribes will have legal oversight in all activities taking place on the sacred burial grounds of Sogorea Te/Glen Cove. It also represents a significant step forward in enacting tribal sovereignty, as the first such easement under CA Senate Bill 18 to be negotiated at the city and recreational district levels.

The agreement’s terms include elimination of the formerly planned restroom facility and relocation of a “downsized” parking lot to an area thoroughly tested to confirm that it contains no human remains or cultural remnants.

While the specifics of the deal leave some ambiguity about how GVRD’s park development project can and cannot proceed, the Committee is hopeful that Yocha Dehe and Cortina will use their newfound influence to make sure that the resting place of the ancestors is not further disturbed or desecrated.

“The cultural easement is an important victory, however we are concerned about the lack of specific language that would prevent grading on the western portion of the site,” states Corrina Gould (Chochenyo/Karkin Ohlone.) “We will be communicating this to the tribes and we have faith that they will take all necessary measures to ensure that ancestral remains and cremations are left undisturbed.”

Gould continued, “We appreciate and are humbled by the vast support that we have received in protecting our ancestors. It is our responsibility to continue to do the work to make certain that all of our sacred places are protected.”

The historical and cultural value of the 3,500-year old site has never been disputed and it continues to be spiritually important to California tribes. On April 14th, local Native Americans and supporters began a 24-hour prayer vigil at Sogorea Te to prevent the Greater Vallejo Recreation District from bulldozing/grading a large portion of the sacred site and constructing bathrooms and a parking lot.

 

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Machu Picchu celebrations just 100km from uncontacted tribes

July 24 marks the 100th anniversary of the ‘discovery’ of Machu Picchu, the Inca citadel high in the Peruvian Andes, by U.S. explorer and academic Hiram Bingham.

But while Peru celebrates the legacy of the indigenous Inca people, it is simultaneously planning to grant oil and gas companies access to the lands of
uncontacted Indians in the Kugapakori-Nahua-Nanti reserve. Such access would pose an extreme risk to their lives.  

Stephen Corry, Director of
Survival International, said today, ‘Only about 100km separates Machu Picchu from the border of the Kugapakori-Nahua-Nanti reserve, where several uncontacted tribes are known to live. Yet the difference in the government’s attitude is phenomenal.

 

 

‘It appears that double standards are at play: when it suits the government to exploit its indigenous peoples, it celebrates them; when it finds a way of profiting from their lands, it draws up plans that could lead to their extinction.

‘If Peru’s new government is serious about demonstrating respect for its indigenous peoples, it will ban global companies from working in areas where they are endangering Indians’ lives. Lavish celebrations with multi-coloured light displays and historical processions might commemorate Peru’s indigenous past, but the only way to safeguard their future is by demarcating and protecting Indian lands.’


ENDS


Notes to Editors:


•    Machu Picchu is thought to have been built by the 15th Century Inca ruler, Pachacutec. It was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983.
•    Machu Picchu is the country’s biggest tourist attraction, and the source of up to 70% of the country’s tourism revenue. It received approximately 800,000 visitors in 2010.
•    Both Peruvian and international laws state that indigenous people should be consulted about projects affecting their lands. In the case of uncontacted tribes, such consultation is impossible. Survival
is calling for all oil and gas exploration on uncontacted tribes’ lands to cease immediately.


source : Survival International

 

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David Ngoombujarra, Actor, Dies at 44

David Ngoombujarra, one of Australia’s best-known indigenous actors, whose films included “Australia” and “Rabbit-Proof Fence,” died on Sunday in Fremantle. He was 44.

Mr. Ngoombujarra was found in a park on Sunday and pronounced dead at Fremantle Hospital, the police said. They have not determined the cause but said his death was not suspicious.

Among his acclaimed films were “Rabbit-Proof Fence,” in which he played a kangaroo-hunter, and “Black and White,” both released in 2002 and based on true stories of Australia’s indigenous people.

“Rabbit-Proof Fence” was named best film of the year by the Australian Film Institute.

Mr. Ngoombujarra won one of his three film institute awards for “Black and White,” in which he played an aborigine convicted of killing a young white girl. He won the other two for “Blackfellas” in 1993 and the Australian television series “The Circuit.”

His other films included “Ned Kelly,” “Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles” and “Kangaroo Jack.”

Born David Bernard Starr in Meekatharra, Australia, on June 27, 1967, Mr. Ngoombujarra was raised in Coolbellup. Information on survivors was not available.
 

source : : Associated Press

 

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Barriere Lake celebrates mining company’s decision to suspend exploration in their territory

The Algonquins of Barriere Lake are celebrating a recent decision by Cartier Resources Inc. to suspend its mining exploration activities in the Algonquin community's traditional territory in northwestern Quebec.

The decision sets an important precedent in Canada concerning
the Right of Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) as defined by the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Friday, July 22, 2011

Barriere Lake Algonquins celebrate mining company’s decision to suspend exploration in their territory: Charest’s turn to act, community says

Kitiganik, Rapid Lake, Algonquin Territory / – The Algonquin First Nation of Barriere Lake is celebrating the recent decision of Cartier Resources Inc. to suspend the Rivière Doré copper mining project in their traditional territory in north-western Quebec, after the community expressed their overwhelming opposition to exploration activities and a potential mine these activities could lead to.

“The community applauds Cartier Resources for respecting our wishes that no mining exploration and drilling proceed. The company is setting an important precedent by not moving ahead without the free, prior and informed consent of the community, a right recognized by the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples,” said Norman Matchewan, a community spokesperson for Barriere Lake.

President and CEO of Cartier Resources Philippe Cloutier stated in a release that the suspension shows the company’s “respect for stakeholders in this area.” [1] Cartier's Rivière Doré exploration project is within an area already covered by an agreement signed between Quebec and Canada and the First Nation in 1991. This Trilateral Agreement – a sustainable development plan for 10,000 square kilometres of Barriere Lake’s traditional territory – has been praised by the United Nations, but both Quebec and Canada have refused to implement it.

Mining exploration was halted in March, when contract workers complied with requests by community members to leave the exploration site. In May, Barriere Lake’s Elders Council issued a letter to the Quebec Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife and the CEO of Cartier Resources pledging that the community would peacefully block any resource extraction like mining on their traditional territory until the Trilateral Agreement is implemented. Community members then travelled to Montreal to speak at the company's annual general meeting, where they reiterated their opposition to the mine. In June, community members camped out on the exploration site to stop test drilling from proceeding. On the company's request Quebec has now suspended the term of Cartier Resource's 1,052 mineral claims in the territory until July 3rd 2013. No exploration activity can take place on the claims during this time.

“We call on the Quebec government to follow Cartier Resources’ lead by withdrawing any mineral claims in the entire area of the Trilateral Agreement until they have implemented the Trilateral Agreement. If Premier Jean Charest is committed to sustainable development and a just relationship with First Nations, this should be his natural next step,” said Matchewan.

"Cartier Resources is to be congratulated on its decision to respect the right of the Algonquin to consent to activities in their territory," added Ramsey Hart of MiningWatch Canada. "This, however, was a voluntary decision by the company that points out Quebec's failure to work with the Algonquin and other First Nations such as the Innu and Mohawk to develop a protocol for consultation and consent of mining activities in their territories.”

 source : Intercontinental Cry

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16-07-11

New Zealand: Kaipara guardians planning cultural ban against Tidal power project

Kaipara guardians are getting ready to place a cultural ban against a new tidal energy power project at the mouth of the  Kaipara Harbour in northern New Zealand.

This past February, the NZ power company Crest Energy got the OK to install 200 tide-driven turbines along the seabed at the mouth of the harbour. The openhydro-style power plant would be the first of its kind in New Zealand and the largest in the world.

However, Te Uri o Hau hapu of Ngati Whatua, which has a kaitiakitanga (guardianship) role in Kaipara harbour, explains the Northern Advocate, is deeply concerned about the possible impacts of the project, from the massive turbines to the power-line that would be buried along the sea floor.

The Hapu (extended family, a basic political unit within Maori society) says the project could damage the delicate underwater ecosystem around Kaipara Harbour and severely impact local marine life including maui dolphins and the west coast snapper.

The survival of the snapper is a particular concern. Historical over-fishing has reduced the snapper's population to a mere 8% of its original stock. According to the Northland Regional Council, commercial catch quotas for the snapper were recently cut back to protect the species and give them a chance to recover.

Just 2 years ago, scientists from the National Institute of Water & Atmospheric Research (NIWA) discovered that some 98% of all west coast snapper come from nurseries in the Harbour.

Once the the Traditional ban--known in the Maori language as "aukati"--has been imposed, Crest Energy and its contractors will be prohibited from entering an area about 7km long and 2km wide.

Te Uri O Hau environment spokesman, Mikaera Miru, said the aukati doesn't stop people from going fishing in the harbour; it's just meant to stop the company.

"The aukati is only for a particular group and that’s what makes this type of rahui unique. It’s only for Crest Energy. It’s not going to prevent people from coming out there and fishing in the graveyard area because that’s the last fishing ground in the Kaipara where you can catch big fish," he said.

Elsewhere, Miru said the ban is protected by legislation, under section 6(e) of the Resource Management Act 1991, "where it acknowledges the relationship of Maori and their culture and traditions with ancestral lands, water, sites, wahi tapu and other taonga should be recognized" notes freelance journalist Suzan Phillips.

The company, on the other hand, dismisses the ban, alleging that it has the lawful right to proceed with the project. It is planning to install the first three turbines as previously scheduled.

The Maori aren't taking the situation lightly. According to Miru, once the aukati has been imposed a flotilla is going to show up in the harbour to chase away any Crest Energy boats.

Source : Intercontinental Cry

 

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Malaysian oil palm giant halts work on Penan ancestral land

The Malaysian Oil palm giant Shin Yang has heard the hopes and prayers of six Penan villages in the Malaysian state of Sarawak.

Late last year, the six villages were horrified to learn that, not only were they going to be evicted from their land to make way for the controversial
Murum hydro dam, but they were also going to be, in effect, "dumped" into an oil palm plantation, as Survival International reported in June 2011.

The Penan had said that they didn't want to move, but the government didn't give them any choice. They also "told the government that if they had to leave they wanted to move to another part of their ancestral land," said Survival.

The Sarawak government accepted the Penan's request; However, as it turned out, the government had already sold the area to Shin Yang, without the Penan's consent.

The company wasted no time "clearing and felling the forest for oil palm plantation" also without the Penan's consent, reported the Molong Post in November 2010.

In a statement, the Peleiran-Murum Penan Affairs Committee, which represents all six Penan villages, said, "It is [most] disturbing to learn that those areas that we proposed as resettlement area have been parcelled out for oil palm plantations... We have found out that Shin Yang Company has started clearing and felling the forest for oil palm plantation in the Metalon River area without our consent. The clearing of forests by the Shin Yang within the proposed Metalon resettlement area will adversely affect our livelihood in the near future."

Commenting on the resettlement plan, Survival's Director, Stephen Corry, said, "Even by the appalling standards of the Sarawak government, which has treated the Penan with contempt for decades, this is breathtakingly cynical. Not only is it forcing more than 1,000 people from the forests they have lived in for generations, it has sold off the area it promised them as a new home, and is allowing it to be cleared for plantations. It looks like the government won't be satisfied until the Penan are reduced to utter poverty and destitution."

Thanks to Shin Yang, perhaps it won't come to that. Survival reported on June 14 that the company has halted work in the area "pending verification from the authorities" that the land has been designated for the Penan.

Shin Yang has given the Malaysian state of Sarawak a chance to finally do right by the Penan. We can only hope they do just that.

Source : Intercontinental Cry

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10-07-11

UN fails uncontacted Indians

The UN’s flagship business initiative is being used as a tool to mask human rights abuses, according to Ayoreo Indians in Paraguay.

Leaders of the tribe, some of whose members are still uncontacted, have written to the
UN Global Compact saying they are ‘concerned and frustrated’ by the inclusion in it of a controversial Brazilian ranching company.

The company, Yaguarete Porá, was
charged and fined for illegally clearing the Ayoreo’s forests, and concealing evidence of uncontacted Ayoreo living there. The Ayoreo have asked that it be expelled from the Global Compact.
The UN Global Compact was designed for companies ‘committed to aligning their operations with ten universally accepted principles,’ including respect for human and environmental rights.

In its reply, the Global Compact has admitted that it has ‘neither the resources nor the mandate to conduct investigations into any of our participants’.

Yaguarete Porá
won Survival International’s ‘Greenwashing Award’ in 2010 for ‘dressing up the wholesale destruction of a huge area of the Indians’ forest as a noble gesture for conservation’.

While some Ayoreo have been contacted by missionaries, a number remain hidden in the forest. But their land is being quickly destroyed to make way for cattle farming.  

Yaguarete has angered the Ayoreo by promoting its membership of the UN Global Compact on its website, which the Indians believe promotes a false image of corporate responsibility.   

Survival International’s Director Stephen Corry said today, ‘This makes an utter mockery of the UN Global Compact. If the UN doesn’t make sure companies displaying its logos abide by the rules, such initiatives become entirely meaningless. Yaguarete should be forced to leave the compact immediately.’

Source : Survival International



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Sarayaku vs The Republic of Ecuador

This week, eighteen Kichwa people of the Sarayaku are in Costa Rica bringing the government of Ecuador before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.

"For eight years they have brought documentation of human rights violations before the Organization of American States, with the goal of the Ecuadorian government admitting to past rights violations and offering guarantees that the same never happen again,"
explains Amazon Watch, long-time allies of the . Sarayaku. "Sarayaku's complaints include oil companies entering their territory without consultation, arrests and torture when they resisted oil exploration, and a long-running campaign to demonize the 1,200 residents of Sarayaku as anti-development terrorists," Amazon Watch continues.

On 6 July 2011, following a powerful ceremony designed to bring the spiritual power of their homeland, the Sarayaku delegation headed into the Court room along with attorney Mario Melo and a leading Washington based human rights NGO, the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL).

The hearing, which is being streamed LIVE on the net, will conclude today, July 7, 2011. You can listen in at http://www.corteidh.or.cr/.
hearings and tribunals

Sarayaku vs The Republic of Ecuador

The people of the Kichwa pueblo of Sarayaku are leading an historic battle against the government of their country. This nearly nine year court battle will soon conclude and the Indigenous leaders of this tiny Amazon community anticipate a judgement in their favor, making Ecuador responsible for human rights abuses inflicted upon their people during a campaign of terror designed to allow oil companies access to ancestral land through government contracts, bullying and coercion.

The people of Sarayaku have stood united for their beliefs and the rights of all people and the rights of nature to equitable, just and healthy lives. Their fight is not only for their community and their land, but also for all people and land that suffers the injustices and destructions fomented by greed and power to manipulate and profit rather than support and nurture life.

Sarayaku sets a tone and example for all to witness, that we must stand up for what is right and speak our truth, to accept and ignore injustice is tantamount to complicity. If we are to ensure life and health of ourselves, our descendants and our planet we must unite and stand for truth and justice in support of all living systems and their right to life.

In these increasingly complicated and challenging times, Sarayaku offers a beacon of light in very dark moments to guide us all on a path of awareness and evaluation of what is truly success and wealth in a World gripped by daunting changes. Standing together they speak aloud a message and a call to action.

Stand together, or fall apart! Time is short , but never too late to make the best use of all the time we have.

We honor and salute their remarkable sacrifices and enduring strength.

For more information visit www.sarayaku.com

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Innu agreement signed while the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visit Canada 6 July

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have visited Yellowknife in Canada’s Northwest Territories. According to reports, they were met by Inuit and Chipewyan drummers and dancers, and subsequently visited a teepee at Blatchford Lodge.

While they have been touring Canada, another people indigenous to the country, the Innu of Labrador, have voted to ratify the ‘New Dawn’ (‘Tshash Petapen’) agreement, a land claim that has been in negotiation with the provincial and federal governments for more than 20 years.

The agreement includes the approval of the Lower Churchill hydro project, which will provide the Innu with royalties, gives the Innu hunting rights in large parts of Labrador and provides compensation for flooding caused by the construction of the Churchill Falls dam in the 1960s – the Innu were not compensated or consulted at the time.  Some Innu oppose the project; Elizabeth Penashue, for example, told CBC News, ‘The Churchill River is going to die.  No life anymore. Money, and all kind of houses, all kind of money … the river’s going to die. Finished.’

The Innu are the northernmost Algonquin-speaking peoples of North America.  They have occupied a vast area of sub-arctic forests, rivers and tundra on the Labrador/Quebec peninsula for approximately 7,500 years, which they call Nitassinan.

Until the second half of the 20th century, they lived as nomadic hunters. For most of the year, the waterways of Nitassinan are frozen, and they would travel in small groups of two or three families on snowshoes, pulling toboggans. When the ice melted, they would travel by canoe to the coast or a large inland lake to fish, trade, and meet friends and relatives. As one Innu man said, ’My identity, my religion, is in the country.  Out there I am a worker, a fisherman, an environmentalist and a biologist.’

During the 1950s and 1960s, however, their ways of life were systematically dismantled by the Canadian government and the Catholic church.  Their land was confiscated, their spiritual beliefs denounced as ’devil’s work’, their people pressurized into settling in overcrowded shacks. The hunting of caribou – integral to the Innu’s way of life – was criminalized. ’In short, the Government enforced many processes that attempted to alter the Innu and diminish the many sources of their uniqueness as a people’ says Colin Samson, a sociologist who has worked with the Innu for years. 

The transition was traumatic and entirely destabilizing for the Innu.  Life in the settled communities became marked by extremely high levels of alcoholism, petrol-sniffing among children, violence, and record levels of suicides, while in April 1999, the UN Human Rights Committee described their situation as ‘the most pressing issue facing Canadians’.

source : Survival International

 

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FIDH Representatives Visit Chile to Observe Treatment of Mapuche People

The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), which is an umbrella organization for more than 160 human rights organizations globally, sent several representatives to Chile to monitor and assess

human rights in the country. Of particular interest to FIDH is the relationship between the Chilean Government and the Mapuche people, particularly with respect to the Antiterrorism Law. The FIDH

representatives will be in the country all week, but have already expressed their concern about how the Mapuche are being treated under the law and are interested in encouraging the Chilean Government to make changes to the Antiterrorism Law.

 

FIDH is a well-respected, international organization that was founded in 1922, which presently works to ensure all human rights found in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Representatives from this

organization arrived in Chile last weekend and have a full schedule that takes them through the end of the week.

 

On Sunday, July 3rd, the representatives met with various Mapuche community leaders and were also scheduled to begin interviewing Mapuche community members, including children. On Monday, July 4th, the representatives visited the four Mapuche prisoners who were, until recently, on a hunger strike for nearly 90 days.

 

After that meeting, Ximena Reyes, an international lawyer, stated that they were concerned with what they saw and how the Chilean Government seemed to be handling Mapuche under the Antiterrorism Law. Of specific concern, was the fact that at least four Mapuche minors are being held under the law at present.

 

The organization will continue this week with a series of meetings — many of which are geared towards spurring changes in Chile’s use of the Antiterrorism Law against the Mapuche people. On Tuesday, July 5th, the representatives will visit the intendant of the Araucanía Region. On July 6th they will appear before the National Congress in Valparaíso, and on July 7th and 8th they will have a series of meetings in Santiago.

Source : Indigenous News

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