PRESS RELEASE JUNE 1992
KARI-OCA WORLD CONFERENCE OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES ON TERRITORY, ENVIRONMENT
Over 650 Indigenous representatives from
the five continents, organized into 92 different Indigenous organizations,
adopted a 109 point Indigenous Peoples' Earth Charter containing the
conclusions of the Kari-Oca Conference and the demands of the Indigenous
Peoples. This Charter forms part of a document containing the Kari-Oca
Declaration and the various resolutions passed during the conference.
The Charter contains environmental demands to state governments to cease
all uses of nuclear material (47) and that Indigenous lands must not be
used for testing or dumping of nuclear products (49). Indigenous Peoples
should make guidelines for environmental groups, who in many instances are
more concerned about insects than human beings (40).
On Bio-diversity and Conservation, we, Indigenous Peoples, cannot be
included as part of a bio-diversity which pretends to be maintained for
scientific and folkloric purposes (59). The logging concessions and
incentives to the timber, cattle and mining industries affecting the
ecosystems and the natural resources should be cancelled (58).
On Human Rights and International Law, points 6 and 36 of the document
state that the concept of terra nullus should be erased from law books and
from international law usage.
On Lands and Territories, Indigenous Peoples have inalienable rights to
their lands and resources (33). Parks must not be created at the expense
of Indigenous Peoples. There is no way to separate Indigenous Peoples from
their lands (41).
On Development, Point 69(a) states that development projects must be based
on the principles of self-determination and self-management in order for
Indigenous Peoples to assume control, management and administration of
their resources. Indigenous Peoples must consent to all projects in their
territories. Prior to consent being obtained, the Indigenous Peoples must
be fully and entirely involved in any decisions. They must be given all
the information about the project and its effects. Failure to do so should
be considered a crime against the Indigenous Peoples.
Indigenous Peoples maintain their right to their spiritual way of life
(17), to their self-determination (14), to their right to life (1).
Today, we have defined alternatives to approach the future of the planet;
the Rio Centro one (UNCED: United Nations Conference on Environment and
Development) and the Kari-Oca one. To walk in dignity toward a common
future based on strength and respect, the United Nations must support a
permanent Indigenous Peoples Conference on Territories and Development
To make this meeting become real between us, sons and daughters of the
Earth, and those who want to rule it, UNCED has heard the voice of the
Indigenous Peoples and we are waiting for its answer.