Wednesday, May 22, 2013

UNPFIP Human Rights

United Nations Permanent Forum for Indigenous Peoples
12th Session May 18-31, 2013
Collective Statement
Abya Yala Caucus
Maya Vision, Centro Cultural Techantit, Seventh Generation Fund,

Human Rights 

Good greetings members of the Permanent Forum, and congratulations once again to you Mr. Chairperson Kanyinke for your nomination.   I join with the voices of many who are especially pleased to see a representative of the Indigenous Peoples of Africa to direct the agenda of our conversation among states, Indigenous Peoples, and the global community which is not only being realized here on floor of the Permanent Forum for Indigenous Peoples, but broadcast across the planet with the communication technologies now at our disposal.


1.  To implement the call made by the Permanent Forum to repudiate the Doctrine of Discovery by appointing a Special Rapporteur to advance the Preliminary Study on the Impact of the Doctrine of Discovery commissioned by the Permanent Forum into an international study with recommendations on how the study may advance the Human Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

2. To call for the restitution of the Treaty Archive of primary source materials and testimonies lent to the United Nations by the Indigenous Peoples for the purposes of the Treaty Study accomplished by Dr. Miguel Alfonso Martinez, to be made accessible globally via the information technologies now available and to the diverse Caucus of Indigenous Peoples participating in the Permanent Forum and other bodies of the UN system.

3.  To take all necessary and appropriate actions mandated under UN General Assembly Resolution 1514 in terms of the Right of Self Determination necessary to defend and protect the Human Rights of the Future Generations of Indigenous Peoples, Equal to all other Peoples, with recognition and respect for the Territorial Integrity of Mother Earth with the Natural World.

4.  To address the violations of Human Rights implicit in the antiquated geographic systems of the States and the planetary cognitive derivatives of their International Borders, by adopting the recommendations of the Declaration of Abya Yala by the Abya Yala Caucus as a necessary decolonization strategy in terms of Education and Human Rights, as referred to in previous sessions of this body. 

5.  To act immediately to reaffirm the principles of the UN Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples which are violated by the continued designation of this forum as a Forum on Indigenous Issues, by adopting the title of this body as the United Nations Forum for Indigenous Peoples.

Good greetings Mr. Chairperson, Honorable Members of the Permanent Forum and assembled delegations of the Nations of Indigenous Peoples,

The concept of a forum is a description of social space, wherein exchanges among diverse viewpoints are allowed and encouraged within a spirit of mutual respect and Self Determination.  Under this principle, our dialogue today in this Permanent Forum for Indigenous Peoples must understood as proceedings of dual mandate, that of the member States of the UN system and the voice of the Nations of Indigenous Peoples.  In review, we remember the original delegation of Indigenous Peoples sent here to the UN forty years ago in 1973 when the Chiefs of Wounded Knee, the Independent Oglala Nation arrived at the door of this institution of global governance in order to remind the conscience of humanity of our continued existence as Nations of Indigenous Peoples with Treaties of International import that bring evidence of the Nationhood of our Indigenous Peoples, treaties which continue to provide the fundamental context for this ongoing dialogue.

In review, it is with this very purpose, and under this very same context, with which we deliver this message today.

With the adoption of UN GA1514 in 1960 and the adoption in 2007 of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and in terms of the dual mandates regarding Human Rights which brings us together here today, a persistent challenge in our dialogue continues to be the fact that the political arguments on both sides of the issue are in conflict, not just because of the doctrines of power that gave birth to the concepts of dominion which define the states and the social relations of their member constituencies and international systems such as the UN, but also because the framework for resolution of the issues within the UN system is incompetent to address the spirituality of the earth based territorial realities of the Indigenous Nations, and the system itself is incoherent according to the geographic sciences of modern times.

What is lacking is a mechanism to define the issues in common terms, outside of the intellectual framework of colonization and dominion. What is missing is a clarification of the concept of territorial integrity, as a dimension of ecological and social sustainability and not a bastard relic from the intellectual Regime of Doctrines spawned by the Divine Right of Kings.

Mr. Chairperson,

It is said that the power to name is the power to destroy, and it was also said “Language is the perfect instrument of Empire.”  In the Age of Abya Yala, today - may we now say that as we move forward out of the Age of Colonialism and through the dawn of 144,000 days of accountability that began once again on December 21, 2013 (Gregorian), as Nations of Indigenous Peoples of this continent Abya Yala upon which this building stands: We greet you once again as relatives who meet together in the House of Mica.
This message is to the purpose of review.  The need for a comprehensive International Study on the Impact of the Doctrine of Discovery remains as an unfulfilled mandate that must be addressed and corrected. The recommendation made at last years’s session of this body, which called to repudiate the Doctrine of Discovery must be reaffirmed and contextualized with the processes of the Protocols of Declonization. We continue to support the call made to move forward into an international study on this issue with a Special Rapporteur to be assigned and a full report with recommendations to be produced by the UN Permanent Forum.

In review, regarding the Special Theme of the Doctrine of Discovery specified at last year’s session of the Permanent Forum, the recommendation was made in the report of that session that “States include in all education curricula, in particular the school system, a discussion of the doctrine of discovery/dispossession and its contemporary manifestations, including land laws and policies of removal.” 
Mr. President and members of the Permanent Forum,

Today we present to the this body the digital archive of the two day International Conference realized in the Akimel O’otham Territories last April 19-20, 2013 which was themed “DISMANTLING the Doctrine of Discovery” and which actually implemented the recommendation made by this body last year on this subject.  This event was organized by a Continental Alliance of Indigenous Nations of Abya Yala and was hosted by the Human Rights and Social Justice Program of the University of Arizona.

As the local-regional, continental-global process of DISMANTLING of the Doctrine of Discovery moves forward, may we recommend that the Permanent Forum recognize the establishment of this Abya Yala Caucus as a necessary decolonization structure in terms of Education and Human Rights as referred to in previous sessions of this body.  In review, the dissemination of this unique development as a practice that may best hope to foster new forms and ways to further education and dissemination of information concerning the Indigenous Peoples communities and organizations, using radio programmes, publications and other appropriate cultural and educational media is called for by the mandate of the Permanent Forum.

We also now remind the Permanent Forum, in the same manner that we also reminded the entire United Nations system in 1973, of the Forum recommendation that funds, programmes and organizations of the United Nations system assign appropriate resources and funds to achieve these objectives.
The Doctrine of Discovery

The willful and premeditated crime against Humanity and the Rights of

Mother Earth that results in the destruction of the capacity of Earth to

be a Mother to the Future Generations.


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