UNSR Victoria Tauli-Corpuz

01
Feb
2016
Canada must address root causes of extreme violence and discrimination against indigenous women – Rights experts Print

acnudhOTTAWA / GENEVA (1 February 2016) – Six experts* from the United Nations and the Inter-American human rights systems today urged the Government of Canada to fully address the root causes of the extreme violence and discrimination against indigenous women and girls in the country.

The human rights experts made their appeal at a key meeting in Ottawa with the three Canadian Ministers charged with designing the official national inquiry into the murder or disappearance of nearly 1,200 indigenous women and girls over the past three decades in Canada.

The inquiry must be participatory, addressing the root causes of the extreme violence and discrimination against indigenous women and girls in Canada,” the experts told the Ministers for Justice, Indigenous and Northern Affairs, and the Status of Women. “Furthermore, it should be based on a solid appreciation that the human rights violations that indigenous women experience require adequate, effective and clear responses.”

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18
Jan
2016
Relatora Especial ONU: "El acuerdo TPP será una seria amenaza para los derechos de los pueblos indígenas" Print

vtaulicorpuz2016Implicancias del Acuerdo Estratégico Transpacífico de Asociación Económica (TPP) para los pueblos indígenas. Entrevista a la Relatora Especial ONU sobre los Derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, realizada por Alejandro Parellada Miembro del Grupo Internacional de Trabajo sobre Asuntos Indígenas (IWGIA).

A raíz de la actual negociación de uno de los principales acuerdos de libre comercio, el Acuerdo Estratégico Transpacífico de Asociación Económica (TPP, en inglés), ¿cuál es su opinión sobre el impacto de este tipo de acuerdo sobre los pueblos indígenas?

Muchos de los acuerdos internacionales de inversión y de los tratados de libre comercio son negociados sin tomar en cuenta los derechos humanos en general y sin ninguna participación de los pueblos indígenas. Así que éste es uno de los problemas principales que enfrentamos.

Uno de los principios centrales de estos acuerdos es que tienen una cláusula de no discriminación en cuanto a los inversores, que establece que no se puede discriminar entre un inversor local y uno internacional, lo que implica la liberalización de todas las leyes para otorgar mayores derechos a las compañías y, lamentablemente, en muchos casos minando los derechos de los pueblos indígenas.

En el caso específico del Acuerdo Transpacífico, no hubo información sobre el contenido de las negociaciones, y sólo hace muy poco que se empezó a conocer su contenido. Se trata de un acuerdo para la total liberalización de inversiones y que, entre otros temas, genera serias amenazas en el área de derechos de propiedad intelectual. Con el pretexto de crear nuevas fuentes de trabajo, me temo que con este acuerdo se debilitan los derechos humanos. Si bien todavía estamos en la fase de su ratificación, podría afirmar que este acuerdo será una seria amenaza para los derechos de los pueblos indígenas.

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17
Dec
2015
Finland. New bill threatens Sami’s rights to their traditional lands and livelihood Print

vickytaulicorpuz2GENEVA (17 December 2015) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, today expressed deep concern at the lack of consultation and the reduced protections to the Sami indigenous people in the current draft law on the Finnish Forest and Parks Service (Metsähallitus) to regulate the management of State owned lands.

“The new draft bill presented to the Finnish Parliament earlier this month no longer contains valuable safeguards for the Sami people’s rights to traditional livelihoods, lands, territories and resources, which had been included in the previous draft approved in 2014,” Ms. Tauli-Corpuz warned.

“I hope that the draft law will consider that the Sami Parliament and the Skolt Sami Village Council have had limited opportunities to take part in this process which is contrary to article 19 of the Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples* which Finland has endorsed,” she said.

According to the new bill, most of the Sami Homeland will be transferred to a new State owned company that has yet to be established. This new company will have the responsibility for all logging carried out on State owned lands in Finland, including in the Sami Homeland region.

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10
Dec
2015
Press Conference: COP21 Human Rights and Climate Change Print

 

Press briefing. Paris, France. 10 December 2015.
21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

In this briefing, human rights experts will explain how the human rights framework can confront evolving threats, including those posed by climate change and will address continuing efforts to integrate human rights considerations in the Paris negotiations.

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09
Dec
2015
On Human Rights Day, UN Human Rights Experts Urge Rights-Based Climate Action Print

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Press Conference 10 December 2015 at 10:00am, Press Room 2
21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change


On Human Rights Day, UN Human Rights Experts Urge Rights-Based Climate Action

With one day remaining before the international community is supposed to reach a new legally binding agreement to address climate change, UN Human Rights experts have gathered in Paris to advocate for the integration of human rights considerations.

There can be no doubt that climate change has both direct and indirect impacts on a range of human rights, including the rights to life, food, water, health, housing, and development. The human rights community has lobbied hard to ensure a just agreement that explicitly aims to respect and protect the rights of all persons, particularly the most vulnerable, and ensure a healthy planet for this and future generations.

On this International Human Rights Day, States have one more chance to honour their commitment made 67 years ago today when they adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in this very city. The Declaration, together with the instruments that followed it form the heart of an international legal framework intended to prevent the human toll of WWII from ever repeating itself and to guarantee everyone a life of human dignity.

In this briefing, human rights experts will explain how the human rights framework can confront evolving threats, including those posed by climate change and will address continuing efforts to integrate human rights considerations in the Paris negotiations.

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07
Dec
2015
Removing Rights for Indigenous Peoples places Forests, Climate Plan at Risk. Statement from Paris, COP21 Print

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Statement from Paris, COP21. Paris, December 07, 2015.

By Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

The outcome of a fierce debate in play during negotiations in Paris today will determine whether the world succeeds in slowing the climate change that places all humanity at risk.

I appreciate the inclusion of Preambular Paragraph 10 which  emphasizes “…  the importance of promoting, protecting and respecting all human rights, the right to development, the right to health, and the rights of indigenous peoples…when taking action to address climate change” of Annex 1 of the Draft Paris Agreement. I also note the reference to human right in Article 2.2. in the same document. This says that the "Agreement shall be implemented on the basis of equity and science, and in accordance with the principle of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities…  and on the basis of respect for human rights…

However, I regret that the earlier text which says “including rights of indigenous peoples…” was removed [Article 2.2] . I strongly believe that having a reference to indigenous peoples’ rights in this section is very important because it lays down the basic principles which should guide the achievement of the purposes of the Agreement. It is very unfortunate that countries known for promoting human rights and advancing democratic ideals globally—are reportedly leading a block of nations that would remove from the negotiating text language that commits countries to respect human rights, including those of indigenous peoples in the implementation of plans for addressing climate change. I appeal to these countries to heed the cry of indigenous peoples and other civil society organizations to return the references to Indigenous peoples rights.  

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01
Dec
2015
Nicaragua: Experta de la ONU exhorta a la calma ante la creciente situación de violencia en la Región Autónoma del Atlántico Norte Print

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GINEBRA (1 de diciembre de 2015) – La Relatora Especial de Naciones Unidas sobre los derechos de los pueblos indígenas, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, exhortó hoy a la calma a todas las partes involucradas en los enfrentamientos entre misquitos y colonos ocurridos durante los últimos meses en la Región Autónoma del Atlántico Norte (RAAN) de Nicaragua.

La creciente tensión en esta región ha generado diversos incidentes violentos, que han generado muertos, heridos y desplazados, además de daños a bienes comunitarios, como los sucesos ocurridos durante los últimos meses en el municipio de Waspán.

“Las raíces de esta tensión se encuentran en la falta de un proceso real y efectivo de saneamiento de los territorios indígenas”, señaló la Sra. Tauli-Corpuz, alentando a las autoridades nicaragüenses a “establecer de inmediato un mecanismo de diálogo con las comunidades para acordar una solución a largo plazo de la situación en la RAAN”.

“Pido al Gobierno que inicie el proceso de saneamiento territorial al que se comprometió públicamente el Presidente Daniel Ortega, priorizando los territorios en conflicto, para proceder al traslado de los colonos a sus lugares de origen o a su reubicación,” afirmó la Relatora Especial.

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12
Nov
2015
UN rights expert raises alarm on “the critical situation faced by indigenous peoples in Honduras” Print

Victoria Tauli-CorpuzTEGUCIGALPA / GENEVA (12 November 2015) – United Nations human rights expert Victoria Tauli-Corpuz warned about the critical situation faced by indigenous peoples in Honduras regarding their land and natural resources rights, as well as their lack of access to justice, education and health. She also expressed concern about the general environment of violence and impunity affecting many indigenous communities.

"A fundamental problem faced by indigenous peoples is the lack of full recognition, protection and enjoyment of their rights to ancestral lands, territories and natural resources," said the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples at the end of her first official visit [*] to the country.

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10
Nov
2015
End-of-mission statement on Honduras by the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples Print

Victoria Tauli-CorpuzTegucigalpa, 10 November 2015. "I am now concluding my visit to Honduras in my capacity as United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples. Over the last nine days, I have met with national, departmental and municipal government authorities, indigenous peoples, civil society organizations and the private sector in several parts of the country. I held meetings with representatives of indigenous peoples, communities and organizations in Tegucigalpa, Puerto Lempira, Auka, Rio Blanco, La Esperanza and La Ceiba. This included meetings with representatives of the Lenca, Maya Chorti, Nahua, Tolupan, Garifuna, Pech, Tawahka and Miskito peoples."

"Over the past several days, I have collected a significant amount of information from indigenous peoples and Government representatives. "

"In the following weeks, I will be reviewing the extensive information I have received during the visit in order to develop a report to evaluate the situation of indigenous peoples in Honduras and to make a series of recommendations. This report will be made public, and will be presented to the United Nations Human Rights Council. I hope that it will be of use to the indigenous peoples, as well as to the Government of Honduras, to help find solutions to ongoing challenges that indigenous peoples face in the country. In advance of this report, I would like to now provide some preliminary observations and recommendations on the basis of what I have observed during my visit. These do not reflect the full range of issues that were brought to my attention, nor do they reflect all of the initiatives on the part of the Honduras government. "

See full End-of-mission statement on Honduras

See media coverade here

 
30
Oct
2015
Indigenous peoples: Human rights expert in first visit to Honduras Print

hondurasGENEVA / TEGUCIGALPA (30 October 2015) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, will carry out her first official visit to Honduras from 2 to 10 November 2015 to study the situation of indigenous peoples in the country.

“During my mission, I will explore the issue of land rights and access to natural resources, the impact of conservation, extractive, energy and development initiatives on indigenous peoples’ lands, as well as issues related to violence, access to justice and social and economic development,” said Ms. Tauli-Corpuz.

"I hope this visit will help raise awareness of the problems that indigenous peoples living in Honduras face on a daily basis and which remain largely ignored,” said Ms. Tauli-Corpuz, who also noted that this will be the first time that an independent expert tasked by the UN Human Rights Council to monitor, report and advise on indigenous peoples' rights will be visiting the country.

“My visit is also about promoting solutions so indigenous peoples can effectively enjoy their collective and individual human rights,” she said.

During her nine-day visit, the Special Rapporteur will meet with Government officials, indigenous representatives and civil society organizations in Tegucigalpa. She will also travel to the Puerto Lempira, Auka, La Esperanza, Rio Blanco and La Ceiba where she will meet local government representatives and indigenous organizations to explore issues related to the protection of their lands, natural resources and livelihoods.

At the end of her mission, on Tuesday 10 November, Ms. Tauli-Corpuz will present her preliminary findings at a press conference that will be held in the morning (time to be confirmed) in Hotel Plaza del Conquistador, Plaza San Martin, in Tegucigalpa.

The Special Rapporteur will submit a full report to the UN Human Rights Council with her conclusions and recommendations on the issues studied during her mission in March 2016.

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28
Oct
2015
Honduras. Relatora Especial realizará visita oficial para evaluar situación de los pueblos indígenas Print

Vicky Tauli-corpuzLa Relatora Especial de las Naciones Unidas Sobre los Derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, realizará una visita oficial a Honduras del 2  al 10 de noviembre de 2015 para estudiar la situación de los derechos de los pueblos indígenas en el país. Se trata de la primera visita que realiza a Honduras una experta independiente encargada por el Consejo de Derechos Humanos de la ONU de monitorear, informar y asesorar sobre los derechos de los pueblos indígenas en todo el mundo.

Durante su visita la Relatora Especial se reunirá con representantes de los pueblos indígenas, con autoridades y funcionarios del Estado de Honduras, y organizaciones de la sociedad civil.

Al final de su misión, el martes 10 de noviembre, la Sra Tauli-Corpuz presentará sus conclusiones preliminares en una conferencia de prensa. La Relatora Especial presentará en 2016 un informe al Consejo de Derechos Humanos de la ONU con sus conclusiones y recomendaciones sobre los temas estudiados durante la misión.

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22
Oct
2015
UN experts urge Latin America and the Caribbean to adopt trend-setting agreement on environmental democracy Print

acnudhGENEVA (22 October 2015) – In an open statement (*) published today, a group of United Nations human rights experts have expressed their strong support for the efforts by governments in Latin America and the Caribbean to agree on a regional legal instrument on rights of access to information, participation, and justice in environmental matters.

“Sustainable development and human rights are interrelated,” said the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, John Knox, as 20 country members of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), representing more than 500 million people, prepare for the next round of negotiations from 27-29 October in Panama City.

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20
Oct
2015
Statement by Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples to 70th session of the UN General Assembly Print

 

[New York, October 20, 2015.] "I have the honor to present today my second report to the General Assembly."
"I dedicate the thematic section of the present report to an analysis of international investment agreements and investment clauses of free trade regimes and their impacts on the rights of indigenous peoples.
"

"The present report also highlights my analysis of the unjust elements of the prevailing system of global economic and financial governance and the constriction of the protective capacity of States and local governance systems. It discusses how indigenous peoples, as some of the most marginalized in the world, bear a disproportionate burden of a system that contains systemic imbalances between the enforcement of corporate investors’ rights and human rights."

Read full statement here

Read meeting coverage here

Read full report here

 

 
19
Oct
2015
The impact of international investment and free trade on the human rights of indigenous peoples. Report to the General Assembly Print

vicky taulicorpuzThe present report is submitted to the General Assembly by the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples pursuant to her mandate under Human Rights Council resolution 27/13.In the report, the Special Rapporteur provides a summary of her activities since her last report to the General Assembly.

She dedicates the thematic section of the present report to an analysis of international investment agreements and investment clauses of free trade regimes and their impacts on the rights of indigenous peoples. She views the present report as the starting point for that issue, which she intends to be of continuing importance throughout the course of her mandate.

The Special Rapporteur contends that investment clauses of free trade agreements and bilateral and multilateral investment treaties, as they are currently conceptualized and implemented, have actual and potential negative impacts on indigenous peoples' rights, in particular on their rights to self-determination; lands, territories and resources; participation; and free, prior and informed consent.

Read full report

 
22
Sep
2015
Second report of the Special Rapporteur Victoria Tauli-Corpuz to the UN Human Rights Council Print

vtchrc2015"This year marks the continuation of a historic year for indigenous peoples. It is the year in which negotiations for the post-2015 development agenda and a new agreement under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change will be finalized. Today we celebrate the first anniversary of the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples and the Outcome Document adopted by consensus by Member-States of the UN General Assembly. The report I present before you is my contribution in elaborating further what needs to be done to better implement the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples which is the main goal of the WCIP Outcome Document. This document asked for a study on the root causes and consequences of violence against indigenous women and girls, which is why I made an initial study on this and I will be presenting on shortly."

Read full statement
Read full annual report

 
22
Sep
2015
Philippines: UN experts urge probe into killings of three Indigenous peoples’ rights defenders Print

acnudhGENEVA (22 September 2015) – The United Nations Special Rapporteurs on the rights of indigenous peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, and on the situation of human rights defenders, Michel Forst, today called on the Philippines Government to launch a full and independent investigation into the killings of three human rights defenders in Surigao del Sur, Mindanao, which is currently affected by armed conflicts.

One of the human rights defenders killed was the director of the Alternative Learning Center for Agriculture and Development (ALCADEV), a school providing education to indigenous youth who live in the mountains and service communities in the CARAGA region. He was found murdered in one of the ALCADEV classrooms in the town of Sitio Han-ayan on 1 September.

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20
Sep
2015
Rights of indigenous women and girls. Report to the Human Rights Council, 2015 Print

womenThe present report is submitted to the Human Rights Council by the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples pursuant to her mandate under Council resolutions 15/14 and 24/9. The Special Rapporteur provides a summary of her activities since her previous report to the Council (A/HRC/27/52) and undertakes a thematic analysis of violations against indigenous women and girls.

Indigenous women experience a broad, multifaceted and complex spectrum of mutually reinforcing human rights abuses. The present report is a study on the situation of indigenous women globally. It focuses on the common themes and patterns experienced by indigenous women across all regions.

Read full report here

 
19
Sep
2015
UN Special Rapporteur’s Report: Indigenous women face endemic violence from all quarters of the globe Print

vtcreportVictoria Tauli-Corpuz's report to the Human Rights Council examines the state of indigenous women's rights around the world.

A new report by UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Victoria Tauli-Corpuz concludes that indigenous women experience extremely high rates of sexual violence, trafficking, domestic violence, and gender based killings. It has been estimated that one in three indigenous women are raped during their lifetimes.

States are sometimes complicit in these violations. The report states that "military officials may perpetrate sexual violence as a weapon to weaken the resolve of indigenous communities in militarized disputes over land and resources." In Fiji, India, Myanmar, Nepal, the Philippines, Thailand, and Timor-Leste, militarized conflict over indigenous land has led to gang-rape, sexual enslavement, and the murder of tribal women. In both Canada and the United States, indigenous women are significantly more likely to be raped or murdered than non-indigenous women.

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28
Aug
2015
Land and resource rights are key to Sami people’s self-determination, UN rights expert says Print

sapmi2015HEMAVAN / GENEVA (28 August 2015) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, today expressed concern at the land rights situation of the Sami people in Finland, Norway and Sweden, given the increased drive to extract and develop minerals and set up renewable energy projects in the Sápmi region.

"For the Sami people, securing rights over their land and natural resources is fundamental to their self-determination and a prerequisite for them to be able to continue to exist as a distinct people," the human rights expert said at the end of a special conference organized by the Sami Parliamentary Council and hosted in Hemavan, Sweden from August 25-27.

Ms. Tauli-Corpuz's participation at the conference was considered an official visit to the traditional region of the Sami people, who continue to live within their territories spanning the formal boundaries of several States.

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24
Aug
2015
UN rights expert to assess Sami people’s self-determination and land and resource rights Print

samiflagGENEVA (24 August 2015) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, will assess the human rights situation of the Sami people in Finland, Sweden and Norway at a three day conference organized by the Sami Parliamentary Council and hosted in Hemavan, Sweden from August 25-27, 2015.

Ms. Tauli-Corpuz's participation at the conference is considered an official visit to the traditional region of the Sami people, who continue to live within their territories spanning the formal boundaries of several States.

"This visit offers a unique opportunity to assess key issues affecting Sami people across the Sápmi region, including their rights to self-determination and to land, water and natural resources, as well as matters involving children and youth, such as education and language," she said.

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