|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues
14th Meeting (PM)
Permanent Forum Considers Draft Report, Including Agenda for Next Session
Also Concludes Discussion on Human Rights
The Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, in a brief meeting this afternoon, considered the draft agenda for its twelfth session, which, if approved, would be held at Headquarters from 20 to 31 May 2013.
Before the Permanent Forum was its draft report (document E/C.19/2012/L.7), which contained three draft decisions calling for action by the Economic and Social Council, respectively on the arrangements for its next international expert group meeting, the dates and venue of its next substantive session, and on the report of the current session. Action was expected on those matters tomorrow, ahead of the closure of the Permanent Forum’s current session.
Taking the floor to comment on the agenda was Michael Hill of the San Carlos Apache Tribe, who reiterated his organization’s call on the Permanent Forum to examine violations of human rights of indigenous peoples whose territories had been divided by colonial Governments, particularly areas in New Mexico, Texas, Arizona and other areas along the United States-Mexico border. He also urged the advisory body to press States to do more to ensure that the lingering vestiges of the Doctrine of Discovery were finally erased, as a way to, among other things, improve the situation of indigenous women and indigenous lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender persons.
The Permanent Forum turned next to conclude its debate on human rights, with representatives of indigenous peoples’ groups strongly protesting State measures that, among other things, undermined their traditional land rights, forced them to assimilate into dominant cultures and left already marginalized indigenous women vulnerable to sexual abuse and trafficking. The speakers also called for the protection of traditional gathering places, such as “healing spaces” and education facilities from military forces that often displaced indigenous peoples for their own purposes.
On human rights matters, the forum heard statements from the following: Koani Foundation Congress; Consejo Nacional de Ayllus y Markas Del Qullasuyu; Adivasi Vijay Smajic Sanstha, Indian Social Institute, Chotanagpur Rising Association; Community for the Integration of Andean Knowledge; Asociación de Descendientes de la Nación Charrúa; Ainu Association of Hokkaido; First Lady’s Save Our Youths Campaign; Organismo Naleb’; New Future Foundation; Indigenous Peoples of Africa Coordinating Committee; Association pour l'Intégration et le Développement Durable au Burundi;Comisión de Juristas Indigenas en La República Argentina; Owe Aku; and Consejo Indio de Sudamérica.
The Forum will meet again at 10 a.m. tomorrow to close its current session with the adoption of its final report, as well as its draft decisions and recommendations.
* *** *For information media • not an official record