The end of the illusion for Indigenous Peoples in Colombia

Demonstration of Indigenous Peoples in Colombia. PhotoArchivo Semana

The Peace Agreement signed in 2016 between the Government of Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) raised hopes among the Indigenous Peoples, Afro-descendant populations and peasant communities that they might henceforward be able to live in peace on their territories. However, Iván Duque’s new government has not fulfilled its side of the agreement and, far from incorporating areas abandoned by the guerrilla into the institutional life of the country, the end result is that these areas have been left to their own devices. Paramilitary groups are now free to compete for control of the territory and to murder social leaders as a way of subjugating rural populations. In addition to anti-personnel mines and forced confinements, massacres became an added mechanism for exerting this pressure in 2020. 

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The surprising link between the fight against drugs, land dispossession and attacks on Indigenous rights defenders in Peru

Arbildo Meléndez Grandes was killed while out hunting and fishing to provide for his family. Photo: Aidesep.

Despite its function being to fight drug trafficking, the National Commission for Development and Life without Drugs (DEVIDA) has been financing the titling of lands claimed by Indigenous People in favour of individuals who indiscriminately cut down forests and practice illegal agriculture. Far from providing a response, the public body denies all responsibility, instead of shifting it onto regional governments. Meanwhile, attacks on Indigenous leaders and harassment of Amazonian communities are mounting.

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Legal pluralism and autonomous protocols

Photo: Edgar Kanaykõ

Upon the weakening of the consultation of Indigenous Peoples set forth in ILO Convention 169 and as a result of a long process of land and political vindication, Indigenous protocols are instruments of governance that coexist with the legal regulations of a State and give way to a more complex and plural legal system that contributes towards pacific coexistence.

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Indigenous Peoples and land rights in Myanmar

Community, part of the Karen people. Photo: Alejandro Parellada 

After resisting the policy of forced assimilation enforced during the decades of military rule, today Indigenous peoples of Myanmar are subjected to land dispossession in the name of boosting economic development and implementation of the country’s climate commitments.

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IWGIA søger praktikant til Dansk Engagement

Motiveres du af at drive social forandring gennem kommunikation? Er dansk dit modersmål, og interesserer du dig for journalistik og trives med at producere indhold til et dansk publikum, inklusive medier og offentligheden? Ønsker du at arbejde med menneskerettigheder og oprindelige folk, samtidig med at du udvikler dine kommunikationsevner? 

I så fald er du måske IWGIA’s nye praktikant til Dansk Engagement.

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IWGIA - International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs - is a global human rights organisation dedicated to promoting, protecting and defending indigenous peoples’ rights. Read more.

Indigenous World

IWGIA's global report, the Indigenous World, provides an update of the current situation for indigenous peoples worldwide. The Indigenous World 2019.

Contact IWGIA

Prinsessegade 29 B, 3rd floor
DK 1422 Copenhagen
Phone: (+45) 53 73 28 30
CVR: 81294410

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