Dialogue Between Nations

23 May 2007

Press Release
Department of Public Information
News and Media Division
New York



Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues
Sixth Session
13th Meeting (PM)


The expert members of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues met this afternoon to discuss their future work, including ways to ensure more effective implementation of earlier recommendations, and proposals on a new questionnaire designed to streamline its report submission process. They also considered a concept paper outlining the parameters of a study on the extent to which customary laws should be reflected in national and international standards addressing traditional knowledge.

Opening the discussions, Willie Littlechild, expert from Canada and Special Rapporteur on recommendations of the previous sessions, introduced a report on analysis and state of implementation of the recommendations of the Permanent Forum at its fourth session (document E/C.19/2007/5), which noted that, following that 2004 session, the Forum had made some 140 recommendations, mainly addressed to the wider United Nations system, regional intergovernmental organizations, indigenous peoplesí organizations and Governments.

He said that some 14 of those recommendations had since been completed, and 33 were in the process of being implemented. An additional set of recommendations had arisen from the international expert workshops on specific issues following the decisions of the Forum, including four such meetings on data collection; free, prior and informed consent; the Millennium Development Goals; and the Convention on Biological Diversityís regime on access and benefit-sharing. Many recommendations, especially those requiring short- and medium-term time frames, had been implemented. Some activities, however, had not been fully reported, he added.

Highlighting some of the reportís conclusions, he said that the role played by the Inter-Agency Support Group, which now included 30 intergovernmental entities among its members, had contributed positively to the work of the Forum. The Groupís substantial contributions in elaborating and disseminating more widely the issues being discussed had helped further the implementation of recommendations.

He also said that it had been observed that there was still some resistance to suggestions that three or more United Nations bodies should work together on joint projects in specific areas so that more positive experiences in terms of complementarity and building synergies could be seen. That would ensure that indigenous peoples were not overlooked owing to turf wars between development agencies. Finally, he encouraged more Governments to submit recommendations, and encouraged indigenous peopleís organizations to also engage in monitoring implementation of the Forumís recommendations.



Intro 2007 | Distinct Cultures Erode | Collective Survival | Recognition of Indigenous Rights | Anti-Poverty Goals
Extinction | Asia | Data Collection | Implementation | Climate Change | Free, Prior and Informed Consent

Kari-Oca Revisited

Nations to Nations Legend

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