Archive for the ‘OIT 169 /ILO 169’ Category

Statement from the family of Arthur Manuel on his passing

Wednesday, January 18th, 2017

Arthur_ManuelOn Wednesday January 11, 2017 at 11:00 PM, Arthur Manuel, our beloved father, grandfather, husband, brother, uncle, warrior, and teacher passed away. Arthur was one of our most determined and outspoken Secwepemc leaders and activists—a pillar in the resistance, known globally for his tireless advocacy for Indigenous Peoples’ right to self-determination. He passed on into the spirit world surrounded by many generations of his loving family.

Arthur was the son of Marceline Paul of the Ktuanaxa Nation and George Manuel of the Secwepemc Nation. George was a political leader and visionary who served as president of the National Indian Brotherhood and the World Council of Indigenous Peoples.

Arthur was born into the struggle and groomed to be a leader and defender of Indigenous rights and title. Coming up as a young leader in the 1970s, he served as president of the National Native Youth Association, leading the occupation of Indian Affairs. He attended Concordia University (Montreal, Quebec) and Osgoode Hall Law School (Toronto, Ontario).

He returned to his community and was elected Chief of Neskonlith Indian Band, Chair of the Shuswap Nation Tribal Council, and Chair of the Assembly of First Nations Delgamuukw Implementation Strategic Committee. He was a long-time co-chair of the North American Indigenous Peoples Caucus of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues and former co-chair of the Global caucus. He was active in the Defenders of the Land and Idle No More movement and as a board member of the Seventh Generation Fund for Indigenous Peoples. He was one of the main strategic thinkers of the decolonization movement in Canada. As the spokesman for the Indigenous Network on Economies and Trade, he convinced the World Trade Organization to recognize that Indigenous peoples are subsidizing the BC lumber industry through the non-recognition of Aboriginal title. He was co-author, along with Grand Chief Ronald Derrickson, of the award-winning Unsettling Canada: A National Wake-Up Call, with a foreword by his friend and fellow activist Naomi Klein.

He worked selflessly in defence of Indigenous territorial authority and he fiercely opposed any termination of Indigenous land rights. He rejected provincial and federal authority over unceded Indigenous land, and challenged the extinguishment of Indigenous title through the BC treaty process. He fought climate change, battling the imminent threat of pipelines across Secwepemc territory.

He was a world traveller who connected Indigenous nations across the globe to unite in a common vision and defend their rights. He was gifted a button blanket by the Nuxalk nation and has received countless honours for his work around the world.

Arthur was also a teacher and a mentor to many. He was a source of knowledge for youth and young leaders. Through his fierce love for his people, he shone a light on the path to justice for a new generation of activists.

He’s a residential school survivor, having attended the Kamloops (Kamloops BC), St Eugene’s (Cranbrook BC) and St. Mary’s (Mission BC) residential schools.

Arthur is survived by his life partner, Nicole Schabus, by his sisters Emaline, Martha, Doreen, and Ida, his brothers George, Richard, and Ara, and by his children, Kanahus, Mayuk, Ska7cis and Snutetkwe. He is predeceased by his parents, sister Vera, brother Bobby, beloved son Neskie and his grandchildren Napika Amak and Megenetkwe.

In his most recent article on Canada’s 150th celebration, published only a week before his death, Arthur insisted again that Canada was built entirely on the theft of Indigenous lands.

“Our Indian reserves are only .02% of Canada’s land and yet Indigenous peoples are expected to survive on them. This has led to the systematic impoverishment of Indigenous people and the crippling oppression that indigenous peoples suffer under the current colonial system.

The .02 land based is used to keep us too poor and too weak to fight back. It is used to bribe and co-opt the Indigenous leadership into becoming neocolonial partners to treat the symptom of poverty on Indian reserves without addressing the root cause of the problem, which is the dispossession of all of the Indigenous territory by Canada and the provinces.” – First Nations Strategic Bulletin, August-December 2016 Issue

Wake: Friday, January 13th 5:00 PM and Saturday, January 14th, Adams Lake Indian Band Gymnasium, 6349 Chief Jules Drive, Chase, BC

Funeral Services: Sunday, January 15th 10:00 AM, Adams Lake Indian Band Gymnasium

Media contact: Russell Diabo at 613-296-0110 or rdiabo@rogers.com
Donations to support Arthur’s service can be sent to jacksoncrick7@yahoo.ca
Condolences to the family and photos of Arthur can be sent to erfeltes@gmail.com

Earth Peoples co-founder Arthur Manuel passed away, 66-years-old.

Friday, January 13th, 2017

Dear Earth Peoples.
Arthur Manuel was always working hard.
Tiokasin Ghosthorse brought me to collaborate with Rebecca Sommer, one of my best friends… and this is where I met Arthur. I was very glad to from the start. I was in line with him in the cafeteria at the UN during the indigenous peoples caucus for the Earth Peoples partners event. I got some coffee and was going to sit down at the table he was at. Arthur said with warning…you might not want to sit there. I said oh is this seat taken? He said no its just that you might not want to be associated with me. A lot of people do not like me.
I looked around over my shoulders and said.. jokingly I said….want me to beat them up for you? He laughed a lot. That was the comical and genuine relationship that I had with him from the start. He is someone I am honored to say has changed my life and i can call him my favorite person and a best friend. I am so thrilled that I had the opportunity to know Arthur.
Arthur was my Earth Peoples brother, a child of our mother Earth and I loved him very much. I always looked up to him for saving the world. I remember saying to Arthur that I hope that I can somehow make a difference in the world like he does. I would like to make my life meaningful. He said Elaine, You don’t want to do what i do. He said… I am not complaining but Elaine, you have the creative arts and you can work in that medium and be effective. As you do…. and it seems more fun. That meant a lot to me. I appreciate that with all of my heart. I hope that i can send that message through my art so that I can make him proud and maybe send some laughs too.
He lives forever in our hearts. He lived. I only hope that I can too live a life that makes the ancestors proud  as was well.

Book Arhur ManualHis last writing to me was when he signed his book
Unsettling Canada
for me with the words “May the world be good to you my friend.
-Arthur”

He will be greatly missed!!!

Elaine+Arthur

Racism in the Arab world

Tuesday, November 24th, 2015

Racism in the Arab world covers an array of forms of intolerance against non-Arab groups, minorities in Arab countries of the Middle East and North Africa.

The previously forbidden topics of race and racism in the Arab world have been explored more since the rise of foreign, private and independent media. In one example, Al-Jazeera’s critical coverage of the Darfur crisis led to the arrest and conviction of its Khartoum bureau chief.
Read more . . .

DECLARACION DE V CUMBRE ABYA YALA: “DEFENDIENDO EL FUTURO DE NUESTRAS NACIONES”

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

“Del 9 al 11 de abril las organizaciones indigenas realizaran una cumbre indigena paralela a la de los Estados. Adjunto borrador de la declaracion para sus contribuciones” Hector Huertas, coordinador de redacción de la declaracion

 

DECLARACION DE V CUMBRE ABYA YALA: “DEFENDIENDO EL FUTURO DE NUESTRAS NACIONES”

 

Nosotros, los representantes de los Pueblos y Naciones indígenas de Abya Yala de las regiones de Sudamérica, Centroamérica, Norteamérica y el Caribe, en el ejercicio del derecho a la libre determinación y en defensa de la Madre Tierra, hacemos de conocimiento de los Estados nuestra posición frente a la VII cumbre de Jefes de Estados y Gobierno de las Américas a celebrarse en Panamá del 9 al 10 de abril de 2015.

 

 

CONSIDERANDO

 

Que nosotros los Pueblos y Naciones indígenas originarias de Abya Yala, teniendo como base la Declaración de las Naciones Unidas sobre los Derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas (2007), La resolución 1514 (XV) de la Asamblea General de las Naciones Unidas el 14 de diciembre de 1960 (Numeral 1 de la Declaración sobre la Concesión de la Independencia a los Países y Pueblos Coloniales); el convenio 169 de la OIT (1989); La Declaración de Viena 2003, la Convención sobre la Eliminación de todas las formas de Discriminación Racial y el Documento final de la reunión plenaria de alto nivel de la Asamblea General de la ONU, Conferencia Mundial sobre los Pueblos Indígenas y otros instrumentos Internacionales relacionados a pueblos indígenas y el ambiente.

 

Que a través de estos instrumentos internacionales, los Estados de las Américas, se han obligado adoptar decisiones de carácter legislativo, administrativo y judicial, para la erradicación de la desigualdad, no discriminación, y la exclusión histórica de los Pueblos Indígenas reconociendo la dignidad inherente y nuestra contribución desarrollo, en especial de la mujer indígena.

Que en las Seis Cumbres de las Américas y sus sesiones extraordinarias los jefes de Estado y de los gobiernos de la región han aprobado compromisos a través de la adopción de declaraciones y planes de acciones, para igualmente erradicar la exclusión, desigualdad, el respeto a los derechos humanos, la consolidación de la democracia, libre comercio, la adopción de la carta democrática, empleo, prosperidad humana, seguridad energética, sostenibilidad ambiental, integración de las Américas, pobreza, desigualdad y seguridad ciudadana que alcanza la situación de los Pueblos Indígenas.

Que a pesar de la existencia de todos los instrumentos y legislaciones internacionales existentes prevalece y recrudece la pobreza, marginación y exclusión de los Pueblos Indígenas en las Américas.

Los Pueblos y Naciones Indígenas llamamos, la atención a los Estados a establecer compromisos serios de corto plazo a fin de cumplir con el mandato internacional por lo que proponen las siguientes Acciones y Compromisos ante los Jefes de Estados y de gobiernos:

Que en las actuales negociaciones de la Declaración Americana sobre los derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas existe un marcado desinterés de parte de los Estados de no contribuir con el fondo de contribuciones voluntarias para apoyar la participación plena y efectiva de los representantes indígenas de las Américas, y los obstáculos a no querer aprobar una declaración fuerte por arriba de los estándares de la declaración de la ONU.

COMPROMISOS

1.     Que los Jefes de Estado y Ministros de Estados se comprometan a financiar el fondo de contribuciones voluntarias para permitir la participación indígenas en el Grupo de Trabajo que prepara la Declaración Americana sobre los derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas y su compromiso a adoptar una declaración fuerte y no por debajo de los estándares de la DNUDPI.

2.     Los pueblos y naciones indígenas pedimos a todos los Estados, se hagan las reformas constitucionales para desmantelar la doctrina del Res Nullius del sistema jurídico, la propiedad del Estado sobre los recursos del suelo y subsuelo en detrimento de los derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas, implementar con carácter de prioridad los derechos establecidos en la declaración de los derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas adoptado por la Asamblea General de la Organización de las Naciones Unidas.   Solicitamos se establezca un comité de expertos independientes designados por la Asamblea General cuyo mandato es la verificación de la implementación de la Declaración sobre los derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas de la ONU.

3.     Se impulse el derecho a la libre determinación de los Pueblos Indígenas, en ese sentido se desarrollen los regímenes autónomos necesarios que le permitan a los Pueblos Indígenas, ser los sujetos del desarrollo, la democracia y la gobernanza sobre sus tierras, territorios y recursos naturales.

4.     Se implemente, el Buen Vivir como derecho humano y principio rector de las políticas públicas de los Estados en los proyectos y planes de desarrollo económico y social que impulsen.

5.     Se implemente los derechos colectivos sobre las tierras, territorios y recursos de los Pueblos Indígenas, el carácter colectivo, inalienable e inadjudicable de los mismos a fin de garantizar la pervivencia de los Pueblos Indígenas en los Estados y en particular a los Pueblos Indígenas no contactados.

6.     Que el derecho al consentimiento previo libre e informado sea desarrollado en la mayoría de los Estados no como un mero trámite para obligar a los Pueblos Indígenas a dar su consentimiento, si no para garantizar el respeto a nuestros derechos humanos, desarrollando los mandatos de la declaración de la ONU en esta materia.

7.     Los Estados deben insertar en todos sus procesos educativos el aporte de los Pueblos Indígenas en la historia, ciencias, artes, filosofía e identidad de Abya Yala e impulsando la educación intercultural en todos los niveles a fin de reflejar la identidad cultural de las naciones, garantizando su participación activa en el proceso, acorde a su cultura, tradiciones e identidad, mediante acciones afirmativas. La Comisión Interamericana de Educación observar el cumplimiento de este mandato hasta que se elimine el racismo, en los textos escolares y en los sistemas de educación. La educación intercultural será una prioridad de los programas de educación.

  1. Los Estados deben en sus programas de salud insertar la visión colectiva holística de la salud indígena, evitar proyectos que comprometan la salud colectiva de los indígenas, reconociendo su medicina tradicional y protegiendo sus recursos y conocimientos de la piratería. Los programas de salud de carácter universal deben insertar la visión holística tanto como colectiva como individual de los Pueblos Indígenas de modo que no se pueden aprobar proyectos de desarrollo en territorios indígenas que afectan la salud indígena de modo que se genere equidad. Por otro lado, en ejercicio a la libre determinación los sistemas de salud tradicional de los Pueblos Indígenas deben formar parte de la estrategia de desarrollo.

 

  1. Se debe adoptar en corto plazo el desarrollo energético propio de los Pueblos Indígenas a través del financiamiento de estas iniciativas a fin de que la energía alternativa llegue a nuestras comunidades. Las instituciones financieras deben condicionar el financiamiento de proyectos energéticos al respeto de los derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas y la participación de los beneficios se deben adecuar antes los marcos legales de carácter nacional y regional.

 

  1. Reconociendo las graves consecuencias del cambio climático y que dicho fenómeno es producto de la utilización indiscriminada de los recursos de la madre tierra por los países industrializados los Estados deben exigir a los países responsables a reducir sus emisiones y no pretender usar los recursos de los Pueblos Indígenas como excusas para no cumplir con sus obligaciones internacionales. Rechazamos, los proyectos que tiene como justificación atacar el cambio climático que afectan las tierras, territorios y recursos de los Pueblos Indígenas.

 

ACCIONES

 

  1. Solicitar a la reunión de Ministros y Altas Autoridades de Desarrollo Sostenible de la OEA que exija el cumplimiento e implementación de la DNUDPI a los Estados miembros de la Conferencia de las Partes de la Convención Marco de las Naciones Unidas sobre el Cambio Climático (COP 20) en todas las medidas que afecten a los Pueblos Indígenas.

 

  1. Que los Estados se obligan a financiar las medidas de adaptación al cambio climático para los sectores más vulnerables, en especial los Pueblos Indígenas y cuantificar los impactos económicos del cambio climático de manera desagregada sobre sectores clave para los países de la región, como las tierras y territorios indígenas, la agricultura, los recursos hídricos, los asentamientos humanos, las zonas costeras, la biodiversidad, la salud entre otros. En este contexto, prestar especial atención a las políticas y acciones relacionadas con la mitigación y la adaptación del cambio climático presentadas o realizadas por los Pueblos Indígenas.

 

  1. Apoyar los procesos de planificación, ordenamiento territorial y titulación de los territorios indígenas que se realizan a nivel nacional y sub nacional incorporen de manera prioritaria la prevención y mitigación de riesgos ambientales. Asimismo, a través de inversiones y políticas promover un desarrollo sostenible. Encomendar a las instituciones financieras y a la OEA que apoyen este esfuerzo.

 

  1. En el marco de la declaración de la naciones unidas sobre los derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas y el Convenio sobre los derechos de los trabajadores migrantes y sus familias aprobado por la Asamblea General en su resolución 45/158, de 18 de diciembre de 1990, y entró en vigor el 1º de julio de 2003, se debe tomar en consideración la situación de los indígenas migrantes. El Grupo de Trabajo migrantes en Conjunto de las Cumbres (GTCC), particularmente a los representantes de los Pueblos Indígenas e Instituciones Financieras, que continúen apoyando los esfuerzos de los países para crear las condiciones económicas y sociales para generar más y mejores oportunidades que permitan el desarrollo y el arraigo de la población en sus países. En particular, los desarrollar programas en las regiones de fronteras a fin de regularizar la situación de indígenas migrantes y transfronterizos y el desarrollo de las capacidades propias del territorio de modo que puedan satisfacer sus derechos humanos.

 

  1. Reconociendo que el desarrollo integral y equitativo contribuye a crear condiciones de seguridad y que a su vez mejores condiciones de seguridad propician mayor prosperidad, solicitamos las siguientes acciones:
  • Se deben reconocer los mecanismos propios de seguridad de los Pueblos Indígenas
  • Se debe prohibir la militarización de los territorios indígenas
  • Se debe apoyar a los Pueblos Indígenas en la lucha contra el tráfico de drogas.

 

  1. Desarrollar esfuerzos especiales dirigidos a reducir la violencia en contra de la mujer, particularmente a través de implementación de políticas públicas eficaces, de capacitación de funcionarios y la recolección de datos e información estadística, particularmente en el marco de la Convención Interamericana para Prevenir, Sancionar y Erradicar la Violencia Contra la Mujer (Convención de Belem do Para). Encomendamos a la OEA, a través de la Comisión Interamericana de Mujeres que continúe sus esfuerzos en este ámbito, especialmente a través del fortalecimiento del mecanismo de seguimiento de la Convención.

 

  1. Crear, sin restricciones ni limitaciones de participación, el Foro Interamericano de los Pueblos Indígenas, de tal forma que haya un proceso continuo de participación y consulta con los representantes de los Pueblos Indígenas y no solamente en la época previa a la celebración de una Cumbre de las Américas. Encomendamos a la OEA que establezca y gestione el Foro.

 

  1. Implementar la participación plena y efectiva de los Pueblos Indígenas, particularmente a través del uso de la tecnología y soluciones digitales. En función de ello, promover el gobierno abierto y el derecho a la información como herramientas claves para lograr mayor transparencia e inclusión.

 

  1. Fortalecer el Estado de Derecho Democrático, la separación e independencia entre los Poderes del Estado, la libre determinación y autonomías de los Pueblos Indígenas, el respeto a los derechos humanos, la transparencia, integridad y eficiencia de la gestión pública, así como la creación de condiciones que hagan posible la implementación de la declaración de la ONU en la participación plena y efectiva en todo el ciclo de las políticas públicas, principalmente mediante la democratización del acceso a las tecnologías de la información y la comunicación. Encomendamos a la OEA que le dé seguimiento a este tema.

 

  1. Promover el derecho a la participación plena y efectiva de los Pueblos Indígenas de acuerdo a sus formas de representación en las contiendas electorales.  Financiar las autonomías indígenas como una forma de fortalecer la democracia.

 

  1. La situación de las mujeres indígenas y los niños indígenas es alarmante en las Américas, se propone realizar acciones urgentes con la participación de los pueblos indígenas para promover el respeto de los derechos de las mujeres, jóvenes y niños, niñas indigenas.

 

  1. Promover y visibilizar la participación de las mujeres indígenas en la agenda política nacional de género, en los programas de salud y educación como protagonistas generadoras de cultura.   Promover acciones educativas concretas dirigidas insertar a la mujer indígena en el ámbito laboral acorde con su realidad sociocultural.

 

  1. Fortalecer los programas nacionales en donde los haya y donde no crearlas para atender la seguridad alimentaria, y la atención primaria de los niños y juventud indígena en su integridad física, como psicológica. Promover el empleo de la juventud indígena.

 

  1. Los Pueblos Indígenas son los más marginados en el derecho de acceso a la información y comunicación, muchos proyectos de desarrollos o decisiones administrativas se toman sin la debida información a las comunidades indígenas, la participación es uno de los pilares para la democracia , no se puede participar si no se sabe o estaba debidamente informado: Proponemos

 

  • El desarrollo urgente de programas de acceso a la información y comunicación en el idioma de los Estados y los idiomas indígenas

 

  • Se debe fortalecer en los programas de desarrollo de redes comunitarias en lengua indígena que permitan el acceso a la información

 

  • Se deben desarrollar programas que permitan a los Pueblos indígenas a tener acceso a tecnología de la información.

 

Dado el 10 y 11 de abril de 2015, en la ciudad de Panamá.

 

Suruí leaders confirm in meeting with president of Funai that they no longer want the carbon project on their land

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015

By Patrícia Bonilha, 25/02/2015

Twelve leaders of the Paiter Suruí whose Indigenous Territory (IT) Sete de Setembro is located in the state of Rondônia, confirmed at a meeting held in the morning of the 24th of February with the president of the National Indian Foundation (FUNAI), Flávio Chiarelli, that they want the Suruí Forest Carbon project to be suspended. The main arguments made by leaders were: serious divisions that have occurred among their peoples; non-fulfillment of promises that life in the communities would improve (while at the same time, they noted, a few families have benefited significantly); the removal of leaders and the centralization of representation of their peoples; and the threats made to several among their peoples who have recently voiced their opposition to the project.

The project signed [a contract] with Brazil’s largest cosmetics company, Natura, in September 2013, which includes carbon credits equivalent to 120,000 tons * [1] of carbon sequestered [in the forests] on the Sete de Setembro indigenous territory. The contract is from 2009 to 2012, for a reported value of R$ 1.2 million, according to press reports [2]. As the first REDD project on indigenous territory, and with international certification, the project won acclaim around the world, in addition to being “sold” as a model project by companies that promote the “green” economy.

However, when the current general chief of the Paiter Suruí, Henrique Iabaday Surui, gave an interview to the September 2014 issue of Porantim newspaper about the severe impacts of this project, another reality was revealed. “The promises were very good: Better quality of life, health, education. Everybody contributed. But soon the conflict started and there was a lack of respect. We are all guilty of accepting this, of signing. But we were deceived and now, we are experiencing the consequences. The suffering is increasing. We regret. This project is not working for us”, explained Jonaton Surui, second chief of the village Linha 14. Then, he said that “if this project continues, there will be deaths, fights, jail. Not only among the Suruí, but among other peoples who are also getting involved with these projects, such as the Arara.”

Speaking in the Suruí language, the elder Joaquim, deputy general chief, reinforced the concerns expressed by his kin, Jonaton and Henrique. “We fell into the trap of a misleading proposal. We’re here to call for the suspension of this project which was also approved by Funai. We are here in front of the president of Funai to call for him to also take responsibility towards us. We do not want this project for our peoples any longer”, he stated emphatically.

In a document delivered to Funai, indigenous peoples from 10 peoples in Rondônia state:
“We demand with urgency the suspension and subsequent cancellation of the carbon project on the Suruí and Cinta Larga indigenous territories and the halting of implementation of any project that involves this kind of exploitation in all indigenous territories in the state of Rondônia and in Brazil. We emphasize the responsibility of FUNAI for the implementation of the Carbon Project on Suruí territory, in the absence of legislation providing for such an initiative.”

After explaining that FUNAI gave approval to the project because they had concluded that the project would benefit the community, and at the insistence of one of the leaders of the peoples, Flávio Chiarelli said that the facts reported by the Suruí leaders present at the meeting were serious and that the agency first needed to better understand what was happening. “This is the first time that the community says that this project is a problem. Once we have heard more [detail], we can refer the case to the attorney to review and, if necessary, bring a lawsuit against it, “he said.
The ongoing struggle for land

After a debate on the need for strengthening of regional Funai coordination and of the agency as a whole, another topic discussed during the morning meeting was the situation regarding the demarcation processes of indigenous territories in the states of Rondônia and Mato Grosso.

The director of ‘Territorial Protection’ at Funai, Aluísio Azanha, after presenting a brief analysis of the difficult political context in which the Funai has been working due to a lack of staff and the curtailment and reduction of financial resources, in addition to the offensive against indigenous rights, provided information on some of these processes. He said that, for example, the Karitiana and Kaxarari indigenous territories were facing legal problems and that in relation to the territories of the Cujubim, Migueleno and Wajoro, it would not be possible to set up working groups this year. Regarding the study in relation to the land of the Puruburá peoples, Azanha confirmed that field work in the area claimed as indigenous territory was expected to take place still in 2015.

In response, representatives of the Puruburá peoples, Antônio and Hosana, urged swift action from Funai in relation to the demarcation of the land and respect for their peoples. “Funai pulled us away from our original territory. We would never have left. The dream of our Elders is to have our land demarcated, but they are dying without seeing this dream come true, having to live in hiding because of the threats that we suffer,” said Hosana Puruburá.

Discussions about the demarcation processes on indigenous territories of the indigenous peoples in Rondônia were held in a meeting in the afternoon. However, already during the meeting in the morning, several leaders expressed their concern about the grave, and unfortunately quite common, invasion of indigenous territories in that state by loggers. A complaint shared by all of the 10 peoples present was related to the feeling of having been abandoned by Funai and a need for the strengthening of this agency in order to be able to provide the support that indigenous peoples need, for example in relation to surveillance and punishment of those who steal wood.

[1] http://g1.globo.com/natureza/noticia/2013/09/indios-surui-concluem-1-venda-de-creditos-de-carbono-indigenas-do-pais.html
[2] http://www1.folha.uol.com.br/ambiente/2013/09/1340114-indios-de-ro-fecham-primeira-venda-de-carbono-certificado.shtml

The Suruí and the Carbon Project: For the world to know
24/02/2015. By Egon Heck, Cimi

“We request the immediate suspension of this carbon project, which is killing the Suruí.” This was the call from all chiefs and leaders of the Suruí at a hearing in the auditorium of the Federal Public Ministry that lasted for more than three hours. Deborah Duprat, coordinator of the 6th Chamber, listened carefully and discussed with the delegation of Indigenous Peoples from Rondônia, in an atmosphere of great trust and openness. After a brief presentation, Dr. Deborah expressed her bewilderment about the presence of some security guards in the auditorium. After having enquired who had sent them, she commented: “We never need such presence at our meetings with indigenous people. So I ask you to withdraw.” Despite claiming ‘higher orders’, they withdrew from the room.

“For me, this is perhaps one of the most important activities of our coming to Brasília,” said Antenor Karitiana. In fact, the Federal Public Ministry has become one of the important areas of struggle and guarantor of the rights of indigenous peoples. Even though the operating structure imposes limitations, it is undeniable that indigenous peoples have an important ally in their struggle for constitutional rights in the Federal Public Ministry.

Controversial project, abhorred by the Suruí
Most of the meeting time at the Federal Public Ministry revolved around the controversial Surui Forest Carbon Project which started in 2007. It is considered the first of its kind implemented on indigenous territory in our country. And in the view of the Suruí and the delegation of indigenous peoples from Rondônia, it should be the last. That is at least what they are fighting for, so that a similar deception is not repeated on any other indigenous territory. The general chief of the Suruí, Henrique Iabaday, who was part of the delegation, said the following about the project in an interview published in the September 2014 issue of Porantim: “The Carbon Project on our land is to take the life out of the Suruí Peoples, it will take the happiness from our life, take the right to live off the territory … It’s a bomb to the life of any human being … What happened to the Suruí Peoples is a story for life, and for the world .. . So that no other indigenous [peoples] engage in this type of project on their land … There is no way of expressing what happened to the Suruí. Our peoples are without life. We want the project to be suspended.”

After testimonies from Suruí leaders, Dr. Deborah Duprat shared her reflection: “I want to be very honest with you. We have a very serious problem with the Surui carbon sequestration project. The 6th Chamber advised not to accept the project. The contract was signed, and therefore, continues to be valid. For advancing a legal case, proof is required that what was agreed is not complied with. I can assure you that the Federal Public Ministry will press for a rigorous and thorough evaluation of the project and its consequences in terms of the violence that resulted, the serious conflicts that can lead to deaths and misappropriation of resources, and about who benefits from them. I’ll ask that Funai conduct a detailed assessment on which to base future decisions. What is needed is to analyze and discuss with all of the communities the terms of the contract. We will investigate, and you do your part.” And she made it very clear that: “The Public Ministry will not interfere with the internal matter of the peoples, because those in the best position to prevent this project are you.”

It was evident, after the more than two hours of debate and clarification that the perverse consequences of this type of project should serve as a lesson and strong reminder to prevent the same happening to other indigenous peoples. The important thing is to understand such a project as part of ‘green capitalism’ policies and as neocolonialism. In February 2012, Cimi issued a statement strongly condemning the insistence of implementation of REDD projects on indigenous territories. From the perspective of the rights and vision of these peoples “those projects transform nature into a commodity, gratitude in obligation, the mythical in terms of contracts and well-being in alleged ‘benefits of capital’. It is the commercialization of the sacred and the changing of human relations at the interface with the environment”, and therefore, we “join those who say NO to the financialization of nature, NO to the green economy and NO to the carbon market “(Porantim , September 2014).

War over land and health

The serious situation in relation to [indigenous] land, because of the invasion by large projects and various economic interests, as well as the paralyzed state of advance in recognition of indigenous territories, coupled with initiatives, such as the PEC 215, against indigenous peoples’ rights as enshrined in the Constitution, amounts to a declaration of war by the Brazilian State against indigenous peoples.

Regarding the paralysis [of the demarcation processes], Dr. Deborah pointed out that the Public Prosecution has urged Funai to take steps regarding the demarcation procedures under way and they have been considering adjustments to the process to enable the continuition of the cases. As for the PEC 215, she reported that steps had already been taken in relation to the unconstitutionality of the initiative.

The document submitted to the coordinator of the 6th Chamber further emphasized: “Another major problem we, indigenous peoples of Rondônia and Mato Grosso, face, is the use of pesticides in the surrounding of our territories. This is seriously affecting the health of our people and compromises biodiversity, reducing the fish in our rivers, the hunting in our forests, and it contaminates the water we consume.”

Regarding the health issues raised, the delegation denounced the overall lack of assistance and expressed their opposition to the creation of the INSI (National Institute for Indigenous Health.). Dr. Deborah added: “If the indigenous health is bad already, it will get worse.”

Docip VIDEO: Bridge to the Future / Un Puente al Futuro / Un pont vers l’avenir / МОСТ В БУДУЩЕЕ

Sunday, February 1st, 2015

Published on youtube May 6, 2014 by DOCIP
VIDEO: Bridge to the Future / Un Puente al Futuro / Un pont vers l’avenir / МОСТ В БУДУЩЕЕ

Indigenous Youth document the achievements of the First Indigenous Peoples’ delegates at the United Nations / La juventud indígena documenta los logros de los primeros delegados de los Pueblos Indígenas en las Naciones Unidas / La jeunesse autochtone documente les succès des premiers délégués des peuples autochtones à l’ONU / Молодежь из числа коренного населения запечатляет достижения первых делегатов от коренных народов в Организации Объединенных Наций

Indigenous Peoples: REPORT CONCERNING THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA SUBMITTED TO THE UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL

Sunday, February 1st, 2015

REPORT SUBMITTED TO THE UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL
In regard to the
UNIVERSAL PERIODIC REVIEW CONCERNING THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Second Cycle-22nd Session
April-May 2015, Geneva, Switzerland

Submitted by Indigenous World Association (IWA) an ECOSOC NGO and the Laguna Acoma Coalition for a Safe Environment
This Report is submitted by the Indigenous World Association (IWA), an ECOSOC accredited NGO, together with the Laguna-Acoma Coalition for a Safe Environment (LACSE). LACSE, an organization of Laguna Pueblo and Acoma Pueblo residents, in New Mexico, USA, is committed to addressing uranium mining legacy issues, including protection of sacred areas, affecting both indigenous nations, and is a member of the Multicultural Alliance for a Safe Environment (MASE, masecoalition.org)., which addresses issues of environmental justice related to uranium mining in the Grants uranium belt in Northwestern New Mexico.

Summary

Despite the 2010 statement in support of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) by the United States, the United States has failed to provide meaningful implementation of the rights contained in the UNDRIP. Perhaps in response to the calls by this body in the last UPR cycle in March 2010, as well as that of other UN Human bodies, the United States issued a statement in support of the UNDRIP in December 2010. However the United States continues to insist that the UNDRIP is “a non-binding, aspirational document” and renders the UNDRIP ineffective through federal, state and local actions that deny indigenous peoples the exercise of rights contained in the ICCPR, the ICERD, and the UNDRIP.

This report addresses the United States’ failure to provide substantive protection for sacred areas and landscapes, in the face of recommendations by the Human Rights Committee in the 2014 ICCPR review, by the CERD committee in the 2014 CERD Review, and by several UN special rapporteurs. Related to these rights are those impacted by extractive activities that impact sacred areas and discriminatorily deprive indigenous communities of essential human rights such as the right to free prior and informed consent and rights related to religion and culture.

1. Mt. Taylor (“Kaaweesthiimaa” in the Acoma language, “Tsibiinaa” in the Laguna language), a sacred landscape and area to Acoma, Laguna, and other Indigenous Nations in the region, is under threat of irreparable harm should proposed uranium mining by Roca Honda Resources, LLC, and others proceed in the area. Despite the recognition of this area as a traditional cultural property under federal and state law, the United States Forest Service, an agency of the United States government, has taken actions which substantively disregard United States obligations under the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD), especially rights with regard to property, health, and participation in cultural activities provided in Article 5 of the ICERD. Despite the Recommendation of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (hereinafter “CERD”) in 2008, to ensure that activities carried out in areas of spiritual and cultural significance to Native Americans do not have a negative impact on the enjoyment of their rights under the Convention, the United States has failed to observe its human rights obligations in this situation.

2. Current federal law purporting to provide protection for cultural rights, and policy on consultation in cases affecting protection of cultural rights, including Executive Orders, have provided no substantive protection for cultural rights. Both the federal and state governments are responsible permitting agencies for mining activities. However, the United States has not taken sufficient steps to establish appropriate mechanisms to ensure a coordinated approach towards the implementation of the Convention at the federal, state and local levels, which are all implicated in the case of Mt. Taylor.

3. The United States Environmental Protection Agency and the New Mexico Environment Department have failed to clean up 97 abandoned uranium mines and 5 former mills in the Grants Mining District in New Mexico after 30 plus years. This includes the Homestake-Barrick Gold mill site now a U.S. Superfund site.

4. The United States Department of Agriculture, and its subsidiary the United States Forest Service, is seeking to permit new uranium mining which will irreparably impact the Mt. Taylor Traditional Cultural Property. The free prior and informed consent of indigenous peoples impacted, including Laguna Pueblo, Acoma Pueblo, Zuni Tribe and Navajo Nation has not been fully obtained for new proposed uranium mining at Mt. Taylor, which is within the aboriginal lands of these indigenous peoples in New Mexico. obtained.

5. Human rights violations of affected indigenous people in New Mexico have been presented in reports to the Human Rights Committee in the United States Review under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and to the CERD Committee as part of the United States review under the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD) during 2014. In both reviews, the United Nations monitoring committees issued conclusions and recommendations regarding protection of sacred places and the need to provide free, prior and informed consent especially in cases regarding extractive activities.

6. The United States has failed to implement existing laws in a manner that fully implements the rights contained in the UNDRIP, including access to sacred sites and cultural rights. These laws include the American Indian Religious Freedom Act (42 U.S.C. 1996), the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (25 U.S.C. 3001 et seq.), the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 (42 U.S.C. 2000 bbl), and the National Historic Preservation Act (16 U.S.C. 470 et seq.) It also violates Executive Order 13007, which directs federal agencies to “accommodate access to and ceremonial use of Indian sacred sites by Indian religious practioners.”

7. The United is ignoring established federal laws and policies protecting indigenous sacred sites when it permits new extractive mining. Specifically it ignores Cite: See Shadow Reports referenced herein and submitted to ICCPR and CERD. See also, Letter of Multicultural Alliance for a Safe Environment, dated June 13, 2013, pp. 5-7.

8. The United States continues to apply discriminatory laws, such as the General Mining Act of 1872, the 1897 Organic Act, and the 1955 Multiple Use Mining Act, all of which preference mining activities over cultural practices on public land.

9. The United States has so far failed to educate federal agencies, state agencies, and local governments on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. The UPR Working Group, in the first UPR cycle for the United States, urged the United States to incorporate human rights training and education in their public policies.

RECOMMENDATIONS:
1. That the United States follow the recommendation of several human rights bodies and establish a National Human Rights institution.
2. That the United States fully implement the UNDRIP.
3. That the United States undertake a comprehensive review of domestic laws and policies, which some U.S. and state agencies interpret to privilege extractive activities over the rights of indigenous peoples, and bring them into compliance with international human rights standards.
4. That the United States adopt effective measures to protect cultural landscapes and sacred areas of indigenous peoples against desecration, contamination and destruction and ensure that consultations are held with the communities that might be adversely affected by State party’s development projects and exploitation of natural resources with a view to obtaining their free, prior and informed consent for the potential project activities.
5. Recommend that the United States take steps to establish appropriate mechanisms to ensure a coordinated approach towards the implementation of the Convention at the federal, state and local levels.”

Indígenas bloqueiam BR que liga o estado de Roraima a Venezuela contra a PEC 215

Sunday, December 21st, 2014

Cerca de 1000 indígenas bloquearam na manhã de hoje, 17, de dezembro, a BR- 174 que liga o estado de Roraima a Venezuela em protesto contra a PEC 215. A manifestação é pacífica e os indígenas do estado de Roraima exigem o arquivamento da medida legislativa.

Neste clima de intranquilidade, os povos indígenas clamam por justiça e pedem pela garantia dos direitos previstos na Constituição Federal. Os povos afirmam que a PEC 215 é inconstitucional e infringe direitos previstos na lei.

Entenda a PEC 215

A Proposta de Emenda Constitucional (PEC 215/2000) é de autoria do ex-deputado federal Almir Sá (RR) que, “acrescenta o inciso XVIII ao art. 49; modifica o § 4º e acrescenta o § 8º ambos no art. 231, da Constituição Federal” para incluir dentre as competências exclusivas do Congresso Nacional a aprovação de demarcação das terras tradicionalmente ocupadas pelos índios e a ratificação das demarcações já homologadas; e para estabelecer critérios e procedimentos de demarcação serão regulamentados por lei”.

No momento, a discussão da PEC 215 está na Comissão Especial da Câmara dos Deputados criada na apresentar parecer. A Comissão é formada na sua maioria por deputados ligados a bancada ruralista que apoiam a PEC 215 e tentam aprovar um Relatório Substitutivo.

O novo parecer além de corroborar o texto original, inclui as piores e inconstitucionais condicionantes do Caso da Raposa Serra do Sol estabelecida pelo Supremo Tribunal Federal (STF). Tais condicionantes foram consideradas pelos ministros do STF como não vinculantes, portanto, não devem se estender a outras terras, mesmo assim a bancada ruralista tenta incorporar no texto da PEC 215.

Além disso, segundo informações publicadas em jornais e pelo Ministério Público Federal, o Relatório Substitutivo a ser discutido teria sido produzido fora da Comissão Especial, por advogado ligado ao CNA pago para atender os interesses individuais dos ruralistas envolvidos em invasão em terras indígenas no Mato Grosso do Sul.

A PEC 215 afronta seriamente os direitos constitucionais. Coloca em risco a sobrevivência física e cultural dos povos indígenas que dependem de suas terras. Somado a isso, contraria os princípios de separação de poderes ao propor transferir para o Congresso Nacional responsabilidades administrativas do governo federal, com absurda interferência clara da bancada ruralista. E o mais grave, os povos indígenas deixados de fora, do processo e das discussões, sem consultas e sem direito de entrar, falar ou defender na casa, considerado do povo, o Congresso Nacional.

As lideranças indígenas de diversas partes do estado de Roraima permanecem na manifestação divulgando suas preocupações e alertando autoridades e a sociedade brasileira sobre o risco de seus direitos.

Conselho Indígena de Roraima

17 de dezembro de 2014

A lógica perversa do capitalismo verde

Wednesday, December 17th, 2014

By Pravda.ru

Para entender como e por que o capitalismo verde avança sobre os territórios indígenas e das populações tradicionais é necessário reconhecer os paradoxos da água. Ou seja, a água é vida e morte, liberdade e escravidão, esperança e opressão, guerra e paz. A água é um bem imensurável, insubstituível e indispensável à vida em nosso planeta, considerada pelo Artigo 225 da Constituição Federal, bem difuso, de uso comum do povo.
Fonte da notícia: Jornal Porantim – Edição Especial “NÃO à Economia “Verde”
“Tudo o que é financeiro, lamentavelmente, é econômico. Mas nem tudo o que é econômico é financeiro”
Por Amyra El Khalili
Nesse sentido, a recente descoberta do que pode ser o maior aquífero de água doce do mundo na região amazônica, o Alter do Chão, que se estende sob os estados do Amazonas, Amapá e Pará, exige atenção e cuidado por parte da sociedade brasileira[i].

O aquífero Alter do Chão, que chega a 86 mil quilômetros cúbicos, possui quase o dobro da capacidade hídrica do Aquífero Guarani, com 45 mil quilômetros cúbicos. Sendo assim, ele atrai, inevitavelmente, a cobiça dos países do hemisfério Norte, que já não têm mais água para o consumo, e pode tornar-se a causa de enfrentamentos geopolíticos. Processo similar acontece no Oriente Médio, com disputas sangrentas pelo petróleo e gás natural.

O controle sobre esta riqueza hídrica depende exclusivamente do controle territorial. As águas são transfronteiriças e avançam sobre os limites entre municípios, estados e países. O recorde histórico da cheia do Rio Madeira neste ano de 2014, que inundou cidades na Bolívia, além das trágicas inundações nos estados de Rondônia e no Acre, é um bom exemplo desta característica das águas.

De modo geral, a água está sendo contaminada com a mineração e com o despejo de efluentes, agrotóxicos e químicos, e poderá ser poluída também com a eminência da exploração de gás de xisto, onde a técnica usada para fraturar a rocha pode contaminar as águas subterrâneas.

Terra à venda

Segundo estimativas de um relatório do projeto Land Matrix, que reúne organizações internacionais focadas na questão agrária, mais de 83,2 milhões de hectares de terra em países em desenvolvimento foram vendidos em grandes transações internacionais desde 2000. Os países economicamente mais vulneráveis da África e da Ásia perderam extensas fatias de terras em transações internacionais nos últimos 10 anos, sendo que a África é o principal alvo das aquisições, seguida da Ásia e da América Latina. Estas compras são estimuladas pelo aumento nos preços das commodities agrícolas e pela escassez de água em alguns dos países compradores, que o fazem para a exploração da agricultura, mineração, madeira e do turismo[ii].

Outros países são alvos desta ofensiva fundiária, como a Indonésia, Filipinas, Malásia, Congo, Etiópia, Sudão e o Brasil, que teve mais de 3,8 milhões de hectares vendidos para estrangeiros somente nos últimos 12 anos. É importante salientar que, até aqui, estamos falando de terras que podem ser adquiridas, em tese, através da compra. Porém, as terras indígenas e de populações tradicionais são terras da União e, não podem ser negociadas e nem alienadas, pois estão protegidas por leis nacionais e internacionais.

Acontece que são justamente estas as terras que estão preservadas e conservadas ambientalmente e são as mais ricas em biodiversidade, água, minério e energia (bens comuns). E, portanto, são nessas áreas que ocorre o avanço desenfreado do capitalismo verde que nada mais é que o velho e desgastado modelo colonialista, extrativista e expansionista neoliberal com uma roupagem atualizada, que visa a apropriação dos bens comuns. Esses bens são definidos como “recursos naturais”, assim como os trabalhadores são considerados pelo sistema como “recursos humanos”. Tudo neste modelo “verde” é usado ilimitadamente e no curto prazo.

Essa concepção utilitarista do “capitalismo verde” já é confrontada com outros modelos de vida, como o Bem Viver, dos povos das florestas, a economia socioambiental, a economia solidária e a agroecologia, dentre outras que estão florescendo.

Para a implementação deste modelo com purpurina verde, algumas leis estão sendo aprovadas com o claro propósito de beneficiar o mercado financeiro. Paralelamente, outras leis são desmanteladas para institucionalizar e legitimar a ocupação de estrangeiros, empresários e banqueiros em territórios latino-americanos e caribenhos, como é o caso dos direitos fundamentais dos povos indígenas, do Código Florestal e dos direitos trabalhistas.

Confundir para se apropriar

Desse modo, contratos unilaterais e perversos são assinados por atores com forças políticas totalmente desiguais, em que confunde-se, propositadamente, “financiar” com “financeirizar”.

Aqui cabe uma elucidativa exemplificação: financiar é, por exemplo, permitir que uma costureira compre uma máquina de costura e consiga pagá-la com o fruto de seu trabalho, tornando-se independente de um empregador para que venha a ser empreendedora.

Já, financeirizar é fazer com que a costureira endivide-se para comprar uma máquina de costura e jamais consiga pagá-la, até que o credor possa tomar a máquina da costureira por inadimplência (não cumprimento do acordo mercantil)

A financeirização faz com que uma parte do acordo, a descapitalizada, fique endividada e tenha que entregar o que ainda possui, como as terras indígenas. E, assim, são desenhados perversos contratos financeiros e mercantis com a finalidade de vincular as terras ricas em bens comuns para que essas garantias fiquem alienadas e à disposição da parte mais forte: a capitalizada.

Nestes termos, as populações indígenas e os povos das florestas deixam de poder usar o que lhes mantém vivos e o que preservam há séculos para as presentes e futuras gerações, as florestas e as águas, para que terceiros possam utilizá-los, além de que estes passam também a controlar seus territórios.

É esta a lógica perversa do capitalismo verde, sustentado pelo argumento de que as florestas “em pé” somente serão viáveis se tiverem valor econômico. O que é uma falácia, pois valor econômico as florestas “em pé” e as águas sempre tiveram. O que não tinham, até então, era valor financeiro, já que não há preço que pague o valor econômico das florestas, dos bens comuns e dos “serviços” que a natureza nos proporciona gratuitamente.

O capitalismo somente avança nas fronteiras que consegue quantificar. Porém, jamais conseguirá se apropriar do que a sociedade puder qualificar.
O bem ambiental é definido pela Constituição como sendo “de uso comum do povo”, ou seja, não é bem de propriedade pública, mas sim de natureza difusa, razão pela qual ninguém pode adotar medidas que impliquem gozar, dispor, fruir do bem ambiental ou destruí-lo. Ao contrário, ao bem ambiental, é somente conferido o direito de usá-lo, garantindo o direito das presentes e futuras gerações.
Somente qualificando o bem comum, ao dar-lhe importância econômica pela garantia da qualidade de vida que nos proporcionam e nos recusando a colocar-lhes preço (financeirizando-o), é que poderemos impedir o avanço desenfreado do capitalismo verde sobre os territórios indígenas e das populações tradicionais.
Não podemos nos omitir nem deixar de nos posicionar em favor daqueles que são os guardiões das florestas e das águas. Se o povo, o proprietário hereditário dos bens comuns, decidir que o ouro, o petróleo e o gás de xisto, dentre outros minérios, devem ficar debaixo do solo para que possamos ter água com segurança hídrica e alimentar, que sua vontade soberana seja cumprida.

Panel finds corporations, United Nations and governments guilty of violating nature’s rights

Saturday, December 13th, 2014

By Indigenous Environmental Network.

Lima, Peru (Dec. 7, 2014)– The International Tribunal for the Rights of Nature judged twelve international and domestic cases; examining the violation of the rights of peoples and nature committed by corporations, The United Nations, and governmental entities. The judgments reference the legal framework of the Rights of Nature and the Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth. The cases were reviewed on Dec. 5th and 6th in Lima’s Gran Hotel Bolivar.

According to Alberto Acosta, president of the Tribunal and former president of the Constitutional Assembly of Ecuador, the rights of nature must have a universal validity. “This ethical tribunal arises when States fail to fulfill their obligation to preserve the lives of living beings,” said Acosta. “As long as nature is seen as property in law, there can be no justice for communities, the climate or nature.”

Acosta led the 13 judges through 12 cases

The Tribunal was dedicated to Shuar leader, José Tendentza, who was found murdered just days before the Tribunal. Tendentza of Southern Ecuador was scheduled to present the Condor Mine case. Acosta led the 13 judges through 12 cases that were determined by the judges to demonstrate egregious violations to rights of nature and human rights. Cases included:

-False Solutions related to Climate Change and REDD+;
-Peruvian cases: Conga Mine, Bagua Massacre – Defenders of Earth, 4 River Basins of Peru;
-Ecuadorian cases: Condor Mine, Chevron/Texaco, and Yasuni ITT
Brazil: Belo Monte Dam
-USA and Bolivia: Hydraulic fracturing “fracking”
-Oceans: BP Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill, coal mine and other threats to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef

Of the cases, the oil exploitation of the Yasuni territory of Ecuador was condemned in addition to the relentless persecution Yasunidos are facing for their dissent. Since 2013, the Ecuadorian government green-lighted oil drilling in Yasuni National Park, one of the most biodiverse areas in the world and home to two indigenous nations in voluntary isolation.

In protest, a group of young Yasunidos joined together to claim the rights of nature, which are guaranteed in the Constitution of Ecuador. They collected more than 800,000 signatures to call for a referendum on the oil exploitation, but their request was rejected by electoral institutions. The Yasunidos are now suing the Ecuadorian government, led by President Rafael Correa, and are waiting for their complaint to be reviewed by the tribunal of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (CIDH).

Additionally, the Tribunal for the Rights of Nature found Chevron-Texaco in Ecuador to be guilty of using inappropriate technology and causing irreversible damage to the environment. They determined that the corporation must fully compensate those affected by the environmental impact.

The Peruvian cases of Conga and Bagua were accepted as threats of violation to the rights of nature. An international special commission was appointed to visit the impacted Amazonian basins to collect more information on the contamination.

The case of the mining project in the Cordillera del Condor was found by the Tribunal to be in direct violation of the rights of nature. They determined that mining must be suspended and those affected must be compensated. They urge the state to investigate and punish those responsible for the death of José Tendentza, the prominent social activist that was in opposition to the mining.

A widow of one of the four murdered activists shares her testimony

The Peruvian cases of Conga and Bagua were accepted as threats of violation to the rights of nature. An international special commission was appointed to visit the impacted Amazonian basins to collect more information on the contamination.

Shannon Biggs, director of Movement Rights, shared testimony on the impacts of fracking , a process of extracting natural gas from shale rock layers deep within the earth. “You cannot do safe fracking,” said Biggs. “This technique should have never been invented. It is one of the most destructive activities against the environment ever seen.”

According to Biggs, 800,000 active oil and gas wells are being fracked in the United States, producing roughly 300,000 natural gas barrels per day. Severe water pollution and earthquakes have been linked with fracking. “We die from fracking. The population is suffering from cancer; my sister has died,” said Casey Camp-Horinek (Ponca) of Oklahoma in her testimony. “The water is contaminated; we cannot fish. We are in danger of extinction.”

Plans to develop large-scale hydraulic fracking in Bolivia were reported by Martin Vilela of Platform Climate Reaction. In recent years the country has increased the production and export of natural gas. 82.4% of its production is exported, generating more than six billion dollars a year. Bolivia has 8.23 trillion cubic feet of gas, and YPFB plans to invest over 40 million dollars between 2013 and 2015. Vilela explained that in 2013 this corporation signed an agreement for fracking in the Chaco area, a region with water scarcity to extract 48 trillion cubic feet of shale gas. Estimates determine that this would consume between 112 and 335 billion liters of water.

Nnimmo Bassey, a Nigerian architect, environmental activist presented on the contamination and temperature rise affecting Nigeria. According to Bassey, oil fields and pipelines have caused deep environmental degradation, deforestation, and countless oil spills. Life expectancy in these impacted areas is 44 years.

Bassey warned that climate change will have catastrophic consequences. “For every degree the temperature rises globally, in Africa it will rise an additional 50%.” In 2012 floods in Nigeria led to the relocation of 6 million inhabitants. Bassey speculates that in 2030 Africa violent conflicts will increase by 54% due to the lack of access to natural resources.

At the hearing on “false climate solutions,” geoengineering techniques that seek to manipulate climate without changing the conditions that cause climate change were reviewed.

REDD+ was also put on trial. President of the Huni Kui people of Acre, Brazil, Ninawa Kaxinawá (Hunikui) testified that “REDD is a lie. We do not accept putting nature on market because it is our soul and spirit; it is priceless, it is our voice.”

According to Ruth Nyambura, of the Biodiversity Network Africa, says that in Kenya, evictions are occurring as a result of REDD. “Four indigenous people were arrested,” said Nyambura. “A woman was hit by the forest service because she was outside of her land.”

The Tribunal is calling for a special hearing in Paris in 2015 to coincide with the upcoming UN COP 21 summit.