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22 Apr 2015

Indigenous Peoples - Invisible Peoples

On the occasion of world Earth Day, the UNPO, with the kind support of the Nando Peretti Foundation, will be convening an international conference on indigenous rights entitled

Indigenous peoples around the world share an integral association with their natural environments both economically and culturally. As such, any exploitation of natural resources found in their lands poses a threat to their natural environment, culture and livelihoods. In this regard, the Awá tribe located in the rainforests of Brazil is one of the most threatened and last uncontacted tribes in the world. The tribe is increasingly under threat by illegal settlement and logging on their lands, as they depend on the forest for their survival.Meanwhile, the Batwa, also called the pygmies of Rwanda, find that land confiscation and new economic systems are diluting their environmentally safe, sustainable, traditional livelihoods. In acknowledging that adaption is crucial for survival, new generations are seeking to undertake innovative traditional techniques in agriculture and artisanal craftsmanship.Language is an important part of one’s identity. Years of misrepresentation, authoritarian rule, migration, and disregard to the Mapuche elder’s hierarchical status has eroded much of the traditional culture and divided communities. The indigenous language, the Mapudungun, is intertwined with acute poverty, land issues, preservation of culture and community cohesion.Reconstructing community histories is a vital part of protecting group identity, creating community cohesion and learning from the past to create better futures. A large proportion of the ethnic Degar-Montagnardpopulation from Vietnam has resettled and preserving their language and knowledge accrued through painful experiences is challenging within their diaspora community.Whole communities can be denied their most basic freedoms because of their culture and ethnicity. This is the situation facing the Haratin, who constitute the largest minority group in Mauritania and the most politically and economically marginalized in a society deeply stratified by race and class. After centuries of enslavement, approximately half of the Haratin community languish in conditions of de facto slavery through domestic servitude and bonded or forced labor.These five groups from Asia, the Americas and Africa confront similar obstacles on a daily basis despite their geographical dispersion. Threats to their indigenous land, resources and traditional cultures have also made an assault on their community cohesion. These commonalities can be addressed through positive action that assists their adaptation, builds community and youth capacity, reconstructs histories, preserves and promotes language and protects natural resources. Inter-cultural dialogue both between different indigenous groups, and with non-indigenous groups, is also paramount to creating greater harmony in societies in which different cultures coexist.


22 Apr 2015 @ 03:00 pm

22 Apr 2015 @ 06:00 pm

Duration: 3 hours


European Parliament - Room ASP 3H-1

Rue Wiertz 60



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Organised by

Unrepresented Nations a...