World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Annual Int'l Day Of The World's Indigenous People

Ban calls for Member States and indigenous peoples to work together

9 August 2008 - The suffering of indigenous peoples around the world "includes some of the darkest episodes in human history," Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today, marking the annual International Day of the World's Indigenous People.

In a message to mark the Day, the first observed since the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples was adopted last year, Mr. Ban said the Declaration "provides a momentous opportunity for States and indigenous peoples to strengthen their relationships, promote reconciliation and ensure that the past is not repeated."

He called on UN Member States and the estimated 350 million indigenous people around the globe to "make use of the Declaration as the living document it is so that it has a real and positive effect throughout the world."

Noting that 2008 is also the International Year of Languages, Mr. Ban called for immediate steps to protect and promote endangered languages, and to ensure their preservation for future generations. He stressed that there was a silent crisis confronting many of the world's languages, in particular those spoken by indigenous peoples.

"The loss of these languages would not only weaken the world's cultural diversity, but also our collective knowledge as a human race," he said.

Mr. Ban said the Day was proclaimed in 1994 to illustrate the UN's desire to help promote and protect the rights of indigenous peoples, and "to put an end to their marginalization, their extreme poverty, the expropriation of their traditional lands and the other grave human rights abuses they have faced and continue to encounter."

In a separate statement, UN Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator Kemal Dervis warned that indigenous peoples were disproportionately likely to be at risk of being among the populations that do not achieve the anti-poverty targets known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015.

"Indigenous peoples are often among the most marginalized populations in society, deprived of access to health care, education and participation in processes that affect their future," he said.

Mr. Dervis stressed that UNDP was working with national governments worldwide to boost the rights and economic development of indigenous groups.

UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) Executive Director Ann M. Veneman said that for the Declaration to become a reality, it "must be accompanied by a strong political will and public policies and budget allocations."


Latest World News | Top World News | World Digest | Archives | RSS

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>


Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>