Six member states of the United Nations have
formally voiced their support for the inclusion of a sentence that
reaffirms the role of Indigenous Peoples in the governments' Political
Declaration at the ongoing World Summit on Sustainable Development.
Four other Nations including the United States, Canada, Sweden and Panama
have reportedly also indicated their support for the proposal.
The six states that declared their support during a meeting with the
Indigenous Peoples delegates on Tuesday, include Norway who are expected
to table the proposal at the government representatives meeting, as well
as Finland, Chile, Denmark, Palestine and the Philippines.
Similar backing has also been received from two United Nations bodies, the
UN Environmental Programme (UNEP) and the International Fund for
Agricultural Development (IFAD).
The Danish representative and a senior adviser in the Danish government
delegation, Tove Pedersen, said her country would lobby all other
governments to endorse the proposal.
"The Danish government is committed to continued dialogue with Indigenous
Peoples, and it's time all nations appreciated the fact that they
(Indigenous Peoples) are here to stay," Pedersen said.
UNEP representative at the meeting, Bakari Kate, expressed UNEP's
recognition of the vital role the Indigenous Peoples play particularly in
regard to biodiversity.
"Our pattern is your pattern, and your pattern is our pattern, our
objectives are the same and as such we are fully behind you," Kate
The Indigenous group is demanding for the inclusion of the phrase into the
governments' Political Declaration as a sign of commitment from those
governments that they do appreciate and uphold the Indigenous I Peoples as
vital in sustainable development.
The phrase which they want included into the Declaration states" We
reaffirm that the Indigenous Peoples have a vital role in sustainable
The indigenous groups are intensifying lobbying for further support from
various groupings including the European Union, African Union and