GENEVA (16 May 2013) - The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, James Anaya,has maintained a dialogue with the Government of Ecuador in which he urged the Government to adopt measures necessary to prevent further violence between the indigenous Tagaeri-Taromenane and Waorani peoples of the Yasuní Biosphere Reserve, located in the Ecuadorian Amazon.
According to information received by the UN expert, several members of the Taromenane people were killed as the result of an assault carried out by Waorani people in March in the province of Orellana. During the attack, two Taromenane girls were also abducted. The assault took place after the death of two elderly Waorani on 5 March 2013, which was attributed to the Taromenane who live in isolation.
James Anaya, the U.N. special rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, has conducted the United Nations’ first-ever investigation into the plight of Native Americans living in the United States. Anaya’s recommendations include advising the U.S. to return some land to Native American tribes, including South Dakota’s Black Hills, home to the famous Mt. Rushmore monument. Anaya says such a move would be a step toward addressing systemic discrimination against Native Americans that continues to this day. "The indigenous peoples of this country ... suffer from poverty, poor health conditions, lack of attainment of formal education [and] social ills at rates that far exceed those of other segments of the American population," Anaya says. "These conditions are related to a history of wrongs that they have suffered.
GENEVA (15 May 2013) - A group of United Nations experts said today that the establishment of truth and justice in Guatemala, as well as being fundamental elements for reparation for the victims, are essential to ensure the non-recurrence of the heinous crimes that characterized the civil war in the country, including enforced disappearance, arbitrary executions, rape and forced displacement of people.
"Justice is the best guarantee to prevent the recurrence of these crimes," stressed the UN experts after last Friday's court ruling that sentenced the former head of State José Efraín Ríos Montt for genocide and crimes against humanity.
The estimated 2.7 million Native Americans living in federally recognized tribal areas have to contend with problems like unemployment, alcoholism, sexual abuse, and suicide. Now a UN report is investigating the conditions of Native Americans in the U.S. Host Michel Martin speaks with S. James Anaya, the UN special rapporteur on indigenous peoples.
Geneva (13 May 2013) The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, James Anaya, issued a press release today urging the Nicaraguan Government to adopt measures to protect indigenous peoples in the Bosawás Reserve as well as to secure their land rights within the reserve.
"The lack of progress for effective measures to secure territorial rights of indigenous communities within the reserve can lead to an escalation of an already tense social situation due to the illegal entry of non-indigenous persons in the reserve," said Mr. Anaya.
Statement of theUnited Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, James Anaya, upon conclusion of his visit to the United States
4 May 2012
Washington, D.C.– "In my capacity as United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, I am concluding my official visit to the United States of America, which I have been carrying out over the past twelve days. During my mission, I have held consultations with indigenous peoples, tribes, and nations in Washington, D.C.; Arizona; Alaska; Oregon; Washington State; South Dakota; and Oklahoma, both in Indian Country and in urban areas. I also had a series of meetings with representatives of the executive branch of the federal government and with state government officials. I regret that my efforts to meet with members of the U.S. Congress were unsuccessful, especially given the prominent role of Congress in defining the status and rights of indigenous peoples within the United States.
I would like to thank the U.S. Department of State and other parts of the government administration for the cooperation they have provided for the mission. I would also like to express my deep gratitude to representatives of indigenous nations and peoples whose assistance in planning and carrying out of this visit has been indispensible. I am honored to have been welcomed into their communities and am humbled by the hospitality I received. I am grateful that they shared their still vibrant cultures and stories, and also their concerns with me.
On 2 May 2013, the Special Rapporteur participated in a roundtable discussion in London, United Kingdom,which brought together representatives of indigenous representatives, business enterprises, and non-governmental organizations to discuss issues related to consultation and free, prior and informed consent in relation to extractive activities. The discussion took place in the context of the launching ofa new study, "Making Free Prior and Informed Consent a Reality: Indigenous peoples and the Extractive Section", by Indigenous Peoples Links, Middlesex University School of Law, and the Ecumenical Council for Corporate Responsibility. During the roundtable, the Special Rapporteur presented updates on his thematic study on extractive industries operating in or near indigenous territories, and discussed international human rights standards related to principles of consultation and consent.
GENEVA / NEW YORK (20 April 2012) – United Nations Special Rapporteur James Anaya will visit the United States of America from 23 April to 4 May 2012, to examine the situation of indigenous peoples in that country. This will be the first mission to the USA by an independent expert designated by the UN Human Rights Council to report on the rights of the indigenous peoples.
“I will examine the situation of the American Indian/Native American, Alaska Native and Hawaiian peoples against the background of the United States’ endorsement of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples,” Mr. Anaya said. “My visit aims at assessing how the standards of the Declaration are reflected in U.S. law and policy and identifying needed reforms and good practices.”
GENEVA (2 May 2013) Today the Special Rapporteur made public his report on the situation of indigenous peoples in Namibia. The report was developed on the basis of research and information gathered by the Special Rapporteur during an official visit to the country from 20 to 28 September 2012. In the report, the Special Rapporteur calls on the Government to "strengthen measures to ensure that minority indigenous peoples can survive with their cultures intact in the fullest sense, including in regard to their traditional lands, authorities, and languages."
The report notes innovative land restitution efforts and land management arrangements carried out by the Government while also highlighting under-representation of indigenous peoples that are ethnically distinct from the majority tribes of Namibia in decision-making at local and national levels, among other issues.