Archive for October, 2013

Final ruling Supreme Court on Raposa Serra do Sol favours indigenous’ rights

Saturday, October 26th, 2013

From  Cimi, 23 October 2013:

The Supreme Court ruling on a series of appeals and embargos, Wednesday the 23rd of October, maintained the original 2009 ruling on the demarcation of Raposa Serra do Sol, but also counter-act various recent anti-indigenous measures. Though maintaining the nineteen conditions that accompanied the original ruling, which do not favour the indigenous, the court denied any nationally binding effect to these conditions.

The ministers of the Brazilian Supreme Court (STF ) ruled on Petition 3388 and on seven so-called declaratory embargos presented to the decision that recognized the constitutionality of the demarcation of the Raposa Serra do Sol, Roraima, in 2009.

Following the vote of the rapporteur, judge Luís Roberto Barroso, the Court upheld the judgment of the decision of 2009, including 19 conditions and stressing unequivocally restricting them Raposa Serra do Sol , or denying the binding effect of the same to the other indigenous lands in Brazil .

Indigenous victory

Even though the nineteen condition were not dismissed, as demanded in one embargo by the indigenous peoples of Raposa and other regions of Brazil country, the outcome of the ruling on Petition 3388 represents an important victory for the indigenous peoples, fighting for their traditional territories. Only the judges Joaquim Barbosa and Marco Aurélio de Mello voted in favour of the dismissal, in opposition to the rapporteur’s vote. The fact is that certain anti-indigenous measures of the Executive and Legislative forces were left defeated.

The Supreme Court ruling deconstructs Ordinance 303 (Portaria 303), enacted by the Attorney General of the Union (AGU) in 2012 and suspended by virtue of massive indigenous mobilization and protests. The ordinance would extend to all indigenous lands of the country the constraints present in the judgment of the Court’s decision on the demarcation of Raposa Serra do Sol

With the decision of the Supreme Court, there is no alternative to the Executive than the immediate repeal of Ordinance 303 AGU. Any distinct position will mean an affront to the Supreme Court and a conscious anti-Indigenous policy option by the Federal Government .

Land titles are void

In this ruling, the Supreme Court reaffirmed the original right of indigenous peoples to their traditional lands. The decision reiterated the decision that any property titles referring to land on indigenous territories are void, without any regard to the date they were issued.

The judges also confirmed the validity of the administrative procedures as conducted by the Executive in the demarcation process. Doing so, the Court gave a final blow to the pretensions of the agricultural forces (a bancada ruralista) as expressed through the Constitutional Amendment Proposal (PEC) 215/00, pending in the Congress.

Cimi: Onslaught continues

The Indigenous Missionary Council ( CIMI ) points out, however, that the termination of this process and the final publication of the ruling of Petition 3388 will not resolve the problems concerning the issue of the traditional lands of indigenous peoples. Presumably the political economic, anti-indigenous forces will continue the violent onslaught that they are unleashing against the indigenous people’s, their lands and their constitutionally established rights.

Why are the Indigenous Colombians marching?

Thursday, October 17th, 2013

Translation by TONATIERRA

40,000 Indigenous People march to require President Santos to keep promises, call attention to historical grievances.

40,000 Indigenous Peoples March in Colombia

40,000 Indigenous Peoples March in Colombia

In Colombia there are 102 distinct Indigenous Peoples, of these 35, according to the Constitutional Court, are at risk of both physical and cultural extinction . Various factors ranging from armed conflict, to the historical processes of discrimination have created this situation. So about 40,000 indigenous march with a clear goal: in search for better living conditions.

“Over 70% of the agreements made with the government in three years of negotiations have not been met,” explains Luis Fernando Arias, senior advisor of the ONIC (National Indigenous Organization of Colombia) to, about a situation she described as a “historic violation” of the rights of the indigenous communities.

What are indigenous Colombians seeking?

There are five key points in the list of demands on the government’s failure to major problems of communities, gathered under the Minga (mobilization ) of Indigenous and Popular Social Movement.

These are human rights violations in the context of armed conflict, respect for indigenous territories, obtaining political and administrative autonomy, review of mining policies and the impact of the US-Colombia Free Trade Agreement and agricultural policies.

On the subject of peace and armed conflict, the denunciation by ONIC of armed groups, legal and illegal are widespread against indigenous peoples. In its report on Human Rights violations and breaches of international humanitarian law, examples are documented of 78 murders and 10,515 forcible displacements in 2012.

According to the UNHCR, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, 70,000 of those displaced by the armed conflict are indigenous and between 2004 and 2008, there were 48,318 displacements.

As for the territories, the issue is to realize a guarantee of protection of the indigenous reserves. A general census conducted by DANE in 2005 recorded 710 indigenous reserves. At this point, the marchers report a “breach of national rules on establishment, expansion and improvement of the reserves.” The ONIC recognizes 600 detained processes of establishment of reserves and another 800 requests for the purchase of land, equivalent to 800,000 hectares.

In addition the organization is denouncing the policies in terms of agrarian issues, mining concessions in the implementation of Free Trade Agreements, as Arias defined as “an interest that favors transnational companies over ancestral cultures”.

The Embera Katío are an example of this situation. The community is located on the river Andágueda, in Chocó, has struggled for 35 years to preserve Dadeiba, their reserve. According to a report by the Land Restitution Unit 30 individual mining rights were granted in this area until last October.

In April this year, a land restitution court ordered the suspension of these concessions and the restoration to the Embera of their land.

This mobilization is preceded by a process of protests cutting across distinct popular sectors, and is added to the voices of discontent that are becoming each time more noticeable. “Only we are concerned that there is repression (…) we have concluded that the only way to become visible is through mass mobilization,” said Arias.

The Regional Indigenous Council of Huila (Crihu) claimed in a statement that at least 1,000 people were detained “without justification” by the police as they prepared to endorse the rally convened by the ONIC.

Colombia Reports Article

Special Issue: Climate Change and Indigenous Peoples in the United States: Impacts, Experiences and Actions

Thursday, October 17th, 2013

For more information on this research visit:  journal
The impacts of climate change on tribal natural and cultural resources are taking center stage in a newly released Special Issue of the journal Climatic Change. This is the first time a peer-reviewed scientific journal has exclusively devoted an entire edition to climate change and its impacts on indigenous communities across the United States.

A collaborative effort by over 50 authors representing tribal communities, academia, government agencies and NGOs resulted in this Special Issue, which explores issues currently experienced by indigenous communities in the U.S. due to climate change, including loss of traditional knowledge, forests and ecosystems, food security and traditional foods, and water, Arctic sea ice loss, permafrost thaw, and relocation. The Issue also highlights how tribal communities and programs are responding to the changing environments.

With a long history and deep connection to the Earth’s resources, indigenous peoples have an intimate understanding and ability to observe the long-term impacts from climate change. Traditional ecological knowledge and tribal experience plays a key role in developing future scientific solutions to adapt to the impacts.

“The Special Issue reminds us that the damaging effects of climate change is a global phenomenon that fails to recognize political nation-state boundaries,” said Prof. Dan Wildcat, Haskell Indian Nations University and contributor to the Special Issue, “The partnerships between tribal peoples and their non-tribal research allies give us a model for responsible and respectful international collaboration that will be essential to successfully mitigate the most damaging effects of climate change that have yet to arrive. Climate change and this Special Issue remind us that, as my Lakota relatives say, ‘We are all related.’ That might be the wisdom we need most whether scientist or non-scientist – Indigenous or non-Indigenous.”

The research presented in this Special Issue supplements the “Impacts of Climate Change on Tribal, Indigenous, and Native Lands and Resources” chapter in the Third National Climate Assessment, to be released in early 2014. The National Climate Assessment will inform national decision-makers on the climate change status and trends throughout the United States.

For more information on this research visit:  journal

LA Times Refuses To Publish Climate Denial, Will Other Newspapers?

Thursday, October 17th, 2013

By CleanTechnica

The science of climate change is settled – an overwhelming majority of the world’s climatologists say it’s happening, faster than predicted, and is 95%-100% likely caused by humans. So why do America’s biggest newspapers still publish letters denying these facts?

They shouldn’t, according to the Los Angeles Times, which recently announced it would refuse to publish any letters to the editor that deny the basic realities of climate science on the basis that doing so is factually inaccurate.

With one editorial, the LA Times has changed the game for journalism in America – and the country’s other major newspapers should follow suit to maintain their integrity, proclaims a new campaign from climate advocacy group Forecast the Facts.

Climate Change Is Fact, Climate Denial Fiction

Newspapers have a time-honored tradition of fact-checking editorials or letters from readers for accuracy, and publishing corrections if mistakes make it onto their pages. Even if they’re taking one side of an argument, reasoning goes that an opinion should be fact-based.

But that’s where climate denial goes off the journalism tracks, argues the LA Times. Multiple studies and research, including last month’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, conclude climate change is happening now and we’re the cause. When 97% of scientists agree on something, much like the link between cigarette smoking and cancer, that point is generally taken as fact not opinion.

But not so for all of the LA Times’ readers, according to Paul Thornton, the paper’s Letters Editor. “As for letters on climate change, we do get plenty from those who deny global warming,” he said. “Many say climate change is a hoax, a scheme by liberals to curtail personal freedom.”

Thus, the paper’s decision to stick to the facts. “I do my best to keep errors of fact off the letters page; when one does run, a correction is published,” said Thornton. “Saying ‘there’s no sign humans have caused climate change’ is not stating an opinion, it’s asserting a factual inaccuracy.” Shots fired, as they say.

Now For America’s Other Leading Newspapers

But what about the rest of America’s top newspapers? That’s where Forecast the Facts is taking up the cause. The group has launched an online petition urging the New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal to adhere to the same strict journalistic standard.

When the campaign reaches 20,000 signatures, the petitions will be delivered to each of the papers and Forecast the Facts will press each of their editors to take a stand on the policy set by the LA Times and answer if they’ll do the same.

In an email to supporters, the campaign laid out its motivation:

“In a rational world, our nation’s journalists would have long ago agreed to this simple idea. These papers would never publish letters or opinion pieces from people who doubt that smoking causes cancer or that HIV leads to AIDS. But they still perpetuate a false balance that presents climate deniers as if they are legitimate contributors to public debate, as opposed to unhinged conspiracy theorists.” With one sentence, the LA Times opened up a new front in the fight against climate change. Now it’s up to the editors of America’s most respected news outlets, and their readers, to decide if fact or fiction will reside on their pages.

Indigenous peoples HIMBA community condemn RTL TV series “Wild Girls”

Wednesday, October 16th, 2013

Namibia’s Indigenous peoples, the semi nomadic Himba people contacted our human rights organization Earth Peoples  to help them stop and condemn the German RTL TV Reality show “Wild Girls”.

The Himba community informed Earth Peoples in various communications that they haven’t been informed about the mocking style in which the Himba are featured in the German RTL TV reality show.  The Himba say that RTL had instead promised them to use the TV show to inform the German RTL series viewers about the human rights problems that the Himba are facing in Namibia, as well as to sensitize the world about the unique culture of the semi-nomadic Himba people.

As the Himba do not speak German, and only a handful of the village speaks English, the indigenous villagers had no way to understand the words and content of the RTL film crew and the 12 German girls, and that is very wrong” said Rebecca Sommer from Earth Peoples, who had stayed with the Himba communities during an Earth Peoples human rights seminar for 3 months in 2012, which resulted in several Himba Declarations signed by the chiefs and a visit by UN Special Rapportuer Anaya, that exposed the Namibian Government for severe human rights violations against the Himba people.

Especially RTL “Wild Girls” viewers are encouraged to click the link below to learn about the reality – not a show, but the real situation and problems of the Himba: List of Earth Peoples Himba articles

Community respected village leader, who is featured in the RTL series, was shocked when he heard from several German Tourists that he was featured as a “wild” man who “wanted the white girl Senna Gammour”

Watch online in German Video: “Der Himbahäuptling hat ein Auge auf Senna Gammour”

The main regional Chief, Kapika,  from the entire region Epupa,  signed the letter to Earth Peoples, in the hope that we can stop the TV series to continue. Unfortunately RTL already broadcasted Wild Girls, but it is our opinion that they must pay at least some damage for not informing the Himba people correctly, as well as for using and abusing the Himba by portraying them as “funny wild savages” as a stage for their “wild girls”.  Also, considering what TV producers usually have to pay for location fees and salaries for participating and featured actors and persons, the list of RTL payments provided by Anitha Tjambiru, the English speaking Himba woman featured in the TV series, are an absolute outrage:

Direct copy of Anitha’s letter to us:

“Yes is me women and man 4 day the pay 5o ( 3.72 Euro/ 5.03 Dollar ) per person and for guide is 15o ( 11.17 Euro / 15.11 Dollar) for 4 days the own of the household 6o (4.46 Euro/ 6.04 Dollar) per day for 4 day. For the village is 10 000 (744.80 Euro / 1,007 Dollar) for use the village per day the give as food, maize 20 kg. Suger 2.5kg .Oil 2 liter and small things. 2 goats”

We will also organize that RTL hands us the DVDs with all the Episodes of the series, so that the Himba don’t need to listen to German Tourists but can see the TV series in which they are badly featured for themselves.





14 OCTOBER 2013

Re: Condemnation of WILD GIRLS film (RTL Reality Show)

We Epupa Community are not happy with a Film called “Wild Girls” or Movie of 12 Girls from Germany who were at Epupa in may 2013 this year, we as a community we really not happy with the above mentioned Film or movie of these people. We heard that film from our people staying in European countries and we also heard from our friends Tourist visited our area. After we realized that, we were naked and having sexual with those white girls, which was not true at all. We didn’t know that, that movie going to be positioned in that way, because they (RTL film team) told us that this nice movie, we thought may be just normal movies. This was shocked us to hear that we were involved in that stupid behaviors.

We strong condemn and stop that TV show not to contuinue showing untrue things and stupid activities, because it is really serious violation of our human rights and destroying the good image and culture.

Therefore we requesting Miss. Rebecca Sommer to intervene (on behalf of our community) in this story of the movie, in order to stop that obove mentioned Film not to continue showing that stupid TV show anymore. Further we ask mss Rebecca Sommer to demand (on our behalf) those 12 girls or wild girls to pay us money so that they can clean our names and image which they make it dirty for whole world, and we want you to go and get DVD from them and then send it to us so that we can watch it ourselves here.

We want this Film to stop right now, before we take further action !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yours sincere

Chief H. Kapika and Epupa Community including Tjikoko Kambindja and Tjikuva Hepute



Himba letter to Earth Peoples asking for help against RTL TV show

Himba girl with goat (Photo © Rebecca Sommer)

Himba girl with goat (Photo © Rebecca Sommer)

Conference on Belo Monte, organised by the Green Party of the European Parliament

Thursday, October 10th, 2013

Dear all,

please find enclosed the invitation to the conference on Belo Monte, organised by the Green Party of the European Parliament. Join the event and please forward this invitation to anyone interested. Including those who still think that hydropower is sustainable: those are the ones we need to show the reality!
best regards, always,
Paul Wolters

Zum Anklicken der Belo-Monte Website, Konferenzprogramm und Anmeldemodalitaeten bitte den Anhang oeffnen.!

Please open the annex for the link to the Belo Monte Website, the conference agenda and the registration!

Para ver el link a la página web sobre  Belo Monte, la agenda y la inscripción abrir el anexo, por favor!

Para ver o link da página web sobre  Belo Monte, a agenda e a inscrição, abrir o anexo, por favor!


The Amazon up for grabs?

A Greens/EFA conference
Thursday 14 November 2013, 15:00-18:30
European Parliament – Room A1G3
60 rue Wiertz – 1047 Brussels

Belo Monte is a controversial mega-dam complex on the “big bend” of the Xingu river, a tributary of the Amazon. Like other mega-projects, it is claimed that such large scale development will improve living conditions for local people, in line with the  Brazilian government’s  slogan “development starts with energy”.  But who benefits? And who pays the bill?

Experts say that Belo Monte will produce a mere fraction of the projected electricity, while it risks huge social and environmental impacts, breaching the rights of the local population to access fisheries and forest. Critics argue that it will entail further construction contracts across the whole region while clearing the forest for mining.

How are EU citizens implicated through investments and shares in European companies which are consortia members? What are the legal challenges and options, what are the corruption allegations, what trials have been brought to the courts, and what has happened with them? What are the alternatives to these kinds of lucrative, publically-funded, expensive, high impact, low yield prestige projects?

Find out through presentations and debate between civil society and players in the legal, political and business world from both sides of the Atlantic, hosted by the three Green MEPs who visited the site and stakeholders in July.

EARTH PEOPLES Solidaritätskundgebung in Berlin zur Aktionswoche der indigenen Völker Brasiliens

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

Solidaritätskundgebung zur Aktionswoche der indigenen Völker Brasiliens

Ohne Land kein Leben

Berlin 30. September 2013. Heute veranstalten AktivistInnen von Earth Peoples, FIAN, Rettet den Regenwald, FDCL, Gegenströmung und engagierte BrasilianerInnen vor der brasilianischen Botschaft in Berlin eine Solidaritätskundgebung zur Aktionswoche der indigenen Völker Brasiliens. Die Assoziation der Indigenen Völker Brasiliens (APIB) ruft anlässlich des 25-jährigen Bestehens der brasilianischen Verfassung zur Verteidigung der in der Verfassung festgeschriebenen Landrechte für indigene Völker und traditionelle Gemeinschaften auf.

Photo © Rebecca Sommer

Photo © Rebecca Sommer

Die genannten Organisationen in Berlin tragen die Forderungen der Indigenen Brasiliens mit Großpuppen, Fotos und Transparenten vor die brasilianische Botschaft in Berlin..

Die brasilianische Verfassung von 1988 legte einen Zeitraum von 5 Jahren fest, um die Demarkierung und den Schutz indigener Gebiete sicherzustellen. Diese Frist ist vor 20 Jahren abgelaufen. Viele indigene Völker leiden aber bis heute darunter, dass ihnen ihre Landrechte verwehrt werden, so z.B. die Guarani-Kaiowá in Mato Grosso do Sul, die ein marginalisiertes Leben in Reservaten oder in Lagern am Rande der Bundesstraßen führen müssen, oder die vom umstrittenen Belo Monte-Staudamm betroffenen Gruppen.

Die aktuelle brasilianische Regierung unter Dilma Rousseff verschleppt den Demarkierungs­prozess; zudem sind zahlreiche Maßnahmen in der parlamentarischen Diskussion, die die Durchsetzung der Rechte auf traditionelles Land erheblich erschweren würden, etwa der geplante Verfassungszusatz PEC 215. Nach diesem Vorschlag würde die Entscheidung über die Einrichtung eines indigenen Gebietes von der Präsidentin auf das Parlament übergehen. Dieser Vorschlag stellt einen gravierenden Rückschritt im Kampf um traditionelle Landrechte dar, da die großen Agrarproduzenten im Parlament stark vertreten sind, es dort aber keine Vertreter der Indigenen gibt, die ihre Rechte und Interessen direkt vertreten könnten.

Besonders stark ausgeprägt sind die Konflikte um indigenes Land im Bundesstaat Mato Grosso do Sul, wo neben Rinderhaltung in großem Stil Sojaanbau für die Futtermittelindustrie und Zuckerrohranbau für die Produktion von Agrartreibstoffen betrieben wird.

„Das geplante Gesetz PL 1.610 sieht die Möglichkeit des Bergbaus auf indigenem Gebiet auch ohne Zustimmung der Indigenen vor. Der Run auf Ressourcen bedroht durch die PL 1.610 152 indigene Territorien, einige von diesen indigenen Ländereien gar zu 96 Prozent. Zudem plant Brasiliens Regierung in den kommenden zehn Jahren mehr als 40 weitere Großstaudämme allein in Amazonien. Unter dem Deckmantel vermeintlich »grüner« Energie geraten die indigenen Territorien so weiter unter Druck.

PROTEST IN BRASILIEN: 30. September bis 5. Oktober 2013:Nationale Mobilisierung in Verteidigung der Carta Magna, der Indigenenrechte und von Mutter Natur

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013
Nationale Mobilisierung in Verteidigung der Carta Magna, der Indigenenrechte und von Mutter Natur
Der Zusammenschluss der Indigenen Völker Brasiliens (APIB), der sich zusammensetzt aus der Koordinationsgruppe der Indigenen Organisationen der Brasilianischen Amazonasregion (COIAB), dem Zusammenschluss der Indigenen Völker und Organisationen des Nordostens, von Minas Gerais und Espírito Santo (APOINME), dem Zusammenschluss der Indigenen Völker des Südens (Arpinsul), dem Zusammenschluss der Indigenen Völker des Südostens (ARPINSUDESTE), dem Rat der Indigenen Völker von Mato Grosso do Sul und der Großen Versammlung des Volkes der Guarani (ATY GUASU), die jeweils an ihrer Basis Hunderte von indigenen Gruppen und Gemeinschaften versammeln; vor dem folgenden Hintergrund:
Dass die traditionellen Rechte und Territorien der indigenen Völker, der Quilombolas und die anderer traditioneller Bevölkerungsgruppen sich starken Angriffen von Seiten einflussreicher wirtschaftlicher Interessengruppen ausgesetzt sehen. Diese Gruppen verteidigen ihr Recht auf Eigentum, aber sie respektieren unsere kollektiven Rechte auf unser heiliges Land nicht, und wollen sich darüber hinaus noch das öffentliche Land und seine natürlichen Ressourcen aneignen;
Dass es eine Offensive des Gesetzgebers gegen die ursprünglichen Rechte unserer Völker, die Rechte anderer traditioneller Bevölkerungsgruppen und gegen die Rechte aller Brasilianer auf eine gesunde Umwelt gibt, die von der Agrarfraktion vorangetrieben wird. Diese Offensive besteht aus Dutzenden von Gesetzesvorlagen und Verfassungszusätzen – insbesondere die Vorschläge PEC 215/00, PEC 237/13, PEC 038/99, PL 1610/96 und PLP 227/12 –, die sogar gegen internationale, von Brasilien unterzeichnete Verträge verstoßen wie die Konvention 169 der Internationalen Arbeitsorganisation (ILO) und die Erklärung der Vereinten Nationen über die Rechte Indigener Völker;
Dass die brasilianische Bundesregierung selbst ein Verhalten des Unterlassens in bezug auf de Rechte der indigenen Völker zeigt, und conivente mit den Interessen der Ruralistas und des Großgrundbesitzes, unseren historischen Gegnern, die im vergangenen Jahr ein neues Waldgesetz zugunsten der eigenen Interessen verabschiedet haben, und die dieses Jahr die Rechte der Indigenen auf ihr Land annullieren möchten. aniquilar. Ein Verhalten, das sich in Maßnahmen wie dem Interministeriellen Erlass 419/2011 zeigt, im Erlass 303/2012 der Advocacia-Geral da União und im Dekret 7957/2013, und welches unter anderem dazu führt, dass die Demarkierung indigenen Landes, die Einrichtung von Naturschutzgebieten, die Landvergabe an Quilombos und die Umsetzung der Agrarreform eingefroren sind.
Der Zusammenschluss der Indigenen Völker Brasiliens (APIB) ruft anlässlich des 25-jährigen Bestehens der Verfassung alle indigenen Völker und Organisationen des Landes sowie die übrigen sozialen Bewegungen auf dem Land und in den Städten zu einer nationalen Mobilisierung zur Verteidigung der brasilianischen Verfassung und für die Implementierung der Landrechte der indigenen Völker, der Quilombolas, anderer tradtioneller Bevölkerungsgruppen, der Landbevölkerng und von Mutter Natur auf, in der Woche vom 30. September bis 5. Oktober 2013.