New York – Indigenous peoples from diverse indigenous groups from all over the world are expected to gather in the coming days in New York City for the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples (WCIP), a high level plenary meeting of the United Nations General Assembly on September 22 to 23.
As a parallel initiative, aiming to give an alternative venue for indigenous peoples, the Indigenous Peoples’ Movement for Self – Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL), organized the gathering “Maximizing and Creating Spaces: An Interactive Learning for Indigenous Peoples.” The gathering centered on how different indigenous organizations engage the United Nations in the face of intensifying forcible migration, plunder of resources and violation of their human rights.
Beverly Longid, Coordinator of IPMSDL, said that the indigenous peoples must rely on their own strength combined with other oppressed peoples of the world in combating the many problems besetting the indigenous peoples. “Indigenous peoples do not rely merely on the UN to provide solutions for their long-drawn-out struggles for their rights. The UN is essentially a place where states consolidate themselves, we are on the fringes of the talks on these halls. Indigenous peoples need to build up its organizations from the grassroots, where we draw our strength,” Longid said.
IPMSDL is comprised of indigenous leaders, organizations, communities and advocates from different countries in Asia, Pacific, Australia, Africa, Europe, Latin America and North America. It stands for the rights of indigenous peoples for self – governance, and for liberation from virtual genocide resulting from minoritization and marginalization in their own lands. Representing indigenous peoples in the Philippines, Piya Macliing Malayao, spokesperson of Kalipunan ng mga Katutubong Mamamayan ng Pilipinas (KAMP, National Alliance of Indigenous Peoples Organizations in the Philippines) was also present in the IPMSDL activities.
Malayao said that they will share the “real and worsening situation of indigenous peoples in the Philippines” in parallel initiatives and in the WCIP. “The Aquino government assert that they respect human rights, and that the ‘inclusive economy’ is growing under its watch. No better than the indigenous peoples, who are most marginalized and oppressed in the Philippines, can belie these claims,” Malayao said.
Aside from interventions to be presented in the WCIP, the IPMSDL delegation is also going to present in different forum with churches, institutions, academe and support groups, and will be joining the People’s Climate March to call for climate justice, and the People’s General Assembly.###
Piya Macliing Malayao, Spokesperson, KAMP, @kampkatutubo
Beverly Longid, Coordinator, Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-determination and Liberation (IPMSDL)
Lea Fullon, Public Information Officer, KAMP 0998-2972500, @LeaFullon