Sunday, September 23, 2012

underreported struggles 65

More essential underreported struggles from Ahni at Intercontinental Cry. The first story is of real concern to me and I hope this move can be defeated by the First Nations.

The Canadian government is getting ready to introduce legislation that would allow individuals to own private property on reserves, effectively abrogating collective ownership of reserve land for any First Nations that adopts the law. The government claims this will encourage economic development; but the reality is far less economical. As Pam Palmater observes, the new law will open the floodgates for the gradual takeover of indigenous lands by non-First Nations peoples, including land-holding companies, banks, corporations; heck, even bored Canadians looking for an adventure!

An International Fact-Finding Mission (IFFM) recently confirmed that the Philippines-based A. Brown Company, Inc. never had the right to open a palm oil plantation in Opol, Misamis Oriental in Southern Philippines, where it displaced hundreds of families from the Higaonon Peoples. The IFFM has since issued a call for A Brown to immediately pull-out of Opol and respect the farmers' and indigenous peoples' right to their ancestral lands.

The Ktunaxa Nation is attempting to challenge the British Colombia government's recent approval of a controversial year-round ski resort that will sit in Qat'muk (GOT-MOOK), a profoundly sacred area to the Ktunaxa Peoples in southeastern British Columbia.The Ktunaxa are now in the process of applying for Judicial Review of the approval.

A Barabaig community in Tanzania has teamed up with the Indigenous Knowledge Project (IKP) to develop a sustainable economy that works for the people. The initiative is a rarity, founded on the ideals of sharing, autonomy, participation and sustainability. In the words of IKP co-founder Heather Cruise, it has to be “heart-to-heart, grass roots, participatory.” In this special series, Intercontinental Cry takes a look at the project, its purpose and the people involved in it.

The Dongria Kondh, who've all but faded away from the international community's gaze, renewed their opposition to Vedanta Resources' plan to mine a sacred mountain for bauxite. Ahead of Vedanta's AGM in London, the Dongria Kondh sent a strong message to the company's chairman Anil Agarwal, "Even if Anil Agarwal himself comes here, we won’t leave our land. We will use all our strength to make them leave this place. Let us live our lives in peace".

Visit Intercontinetal Cry to read about these issues and many others.

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