August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Evo Morales to deliver climate conference results to UN in New York

Bolivian President Evo Morales to deliver Peoples Climate Conference results to UN Secretary General, with Tom Goldtooth of IEN

Press statement from Bolivian President Evo Morales
Censored News
Photo: Tom Goldtooth (right) at World Climate Conference in Bolivia, with Manny Pino, Acoma Pueblo, and Ofelia Rivas, O'odham. Photo Michelle Cook.

NEW YORK – On the morning of Friday, May 7th, President Evo Morales of Bolivia will personally present UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon with the conclusions of the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of the Mother Earth, which was held in Cochabamba, Bolivia from April 20th to 22nd, 2010. Some 30,000 people hailing from over 150 countries attended the Conference, which offered governments and civil society groups a rare chance to work together to address climate change.

Bolivia’s first indigenous president will be joined in New York by delegates from around the world who were active at the conference, including: Nnimmo Bassey (Nigeria) and Asad Rehman (UK) from the organization Friends of the Earth, Yoon Guem Soon (South Korea) and Tom├ís Balduino (Brazil) of Via Campesina, Meena Raman (Mayalysia) of Third World Network, Jeremy Osborn (USA) of, Tom Goldtooth (USA) of the Indigenous Environmental Network, Enrique Daza (Colombia) of the Hemispheric Social Alliance, and Maude Barlow (Canada) of the Blue Planet Project.

Following the meeting with Ban Ki-moon, Morales will hold a press conference in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium of the United Nations at 1pm. He and the international delegates will later share the conclusions reached in the People’s Accord of Cochabamba with developing countries in a briefing to the G77 and China.

Last week, the Bolivian government submitted the People’s Accord to the UN body that deals with climate change negotiations in the form of an official contribution to the debates taking place under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Among the most important aspects of the People’s Accord are a project for a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by developing countries for the 2010-2017 period, a draft Declaration on the Rights of Mother Earth, a proposal for a global referendum on climate change, and recommendations for the creation of an International Climate and Justice Tribunal.

Delegation of Canada promoting in the UN the conclusions of Conference on Climate Change
May 7, 2010 in Press

UN Secretary General to Meet with Maude Barlow Friday

OTTAWA, Ontario – May 7 – Today, Council of Canadians National Chairperson Maude Barlow is part of an international social movement delegation having an historic meeting with the Secretary General of the United Nations to discuss climate justice and the rights of Mother Earth. The government of Bolivia organized the meeting of 12 delegates from around the world, who will also meet with the G77 and China.The delegation will focus on the conclusions of last month’s international conference on climate change in Bolivia.

“The message from social movements and governments in Cochabamba was loud and clear that we need urgent climate action that respects the rights of Mother Earth. I look forward to discussing these issues with the UN Secretary General today,” says Maude Barlow.

The World Peoples’ Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth in Cochabamba anticipated 8,000 participants. Instead an estimated 30,000 participants from nearly 150 countries and official representation from 48 governments were present at the historic event. “It is shameful that the Canadian government was not an active participant in the conference,” adds Barlow. “Our government’s climate policy continues to be driven more by interests in the tar sands, than advancing climate justice” adds Barlow.

“The People’s Agreement that emerged from the conference, and is now the basis of an official submission by the Bolivian government under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, advances an agenda led by civil society organizations working with governments,” says Andrea Harden-Donahue, Climate Justice Campaigner with the Council of Canadians.

The Agreement includes proposals for a global referendum on climate change, setting up an international climate justice tribunal and establishing a Universal Declaration on the Rights of Mother Earth. It advocates climate debt repayment from the global North to the global South including much deeper domestic emission reductions and equitable climate financing.

The Council of Canadians is honored to be involved in promoting the outcomes of the conference as well as the critical concept of protecting the rights of Mother Earth.


Bolivian movement pushes for role in climate talks

UNITED NATIONS — Bolivia's president and indigenous, social and environmental leaders are pressing for new rights for the planet, a greater role in global climate talks and deep cuts in rich nations' greenhouse gases.

President Evo Morales said Friday that rich nations use more than their share of the atmosphere by emitting too much carbon pollution that leads to global warming.

He and several activists said the voluntary cuts in the U.S.-brokered Copenhagen Accord last December doom the planet to overheating.

They presented U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon with an alternative declaration by a conference of 35,000 people in Cochabamba, Bolivia, last month.

It demands $300 billion a year to deal with global warming, emissions cuts of 50 percent by 2020 in developed nations and an international climate court for enforcement.

Support 'Wounded Knee Medals of Dishonor' Petition

Support "Wounded Knee Medals of Dishonor" PetitionBy Ben Carnes
Censored News

In June of 2008, Wanbli Tate initiated an online petition entitled "Wounded knee Medals of Dishonor." By May 3rd, the day of the incident where three Blackhawk helicopters attempted to land at the Wounded Knee Memorial site, but were prevented by Lakota women, children and men. They had not been notified earlier that they were coming and felt that landing at the site by the military was an insult and desecration of their ancestors grave site. The people who defended Wounded Knee said they would have welcome the military coming to hear their story, but don't bring their weapons of war to their sacred grounds.
This incident prompted Theresa Two Bulls, the Pine Ridge President to call a press conference on Monday morning to offer her apologies. Leonard Little Finger commended the people who kept the helicopters from landing. Two Bulls said she would be contacting the other reservations to have talks on what they can do in the future to have better communication and understanding in how to deal with this. Later that day, the Pine Ridge Tribal Council passed a resolution, that stated in part:
Therefore, Be It Resolved, that the Oglala Sioux Tribe will take every action to see that the United States Reclaims the Twenty Medals of Honor from the 7th Calvary for their role in the Massacre at Wounded Knee, to remove any recognition the US Military bestows to its entities for the Massacre at Wounded Knee, and to obtain the return of personal items taken from Lakota people at the 1890 Massacre.
Therefore Be It Further Resolved, that the Oglala Sioux Tribe, its members, any entity, organization, or resident on the Pine Ridge Reservation will not allow the United States Military from this time forward to come anywhere near the 1890 Wounded Knee Massacre Mass Grave in order to demonstrate Honor and Respect for the Lakota people buried there, and to ensure a peaceful, nonviolent, weapon-free zone for the Mass Gravesite area.
The petition started by Wanbli began to gather momentum and signatures have been added daily since this incident. He would like to have 10,000 signatures so that he can approach the Senate Armed Forces to rescind the medals of honor awarded to "Twenty-three soldiers from the Seventh Calvary were later awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for the slaughter of defenseless Indians at Wounded Knee."
The petition goes on to say, "We are asking that these Medals of DIS Honor awarded to the members of the 7th Calvary of the United States Army for the murder of innocent women children and men on that terrible December morning be rescinded. And that the Battle Pennant on the Flag of the United States Army be removed and destroyed."
The purpose of the visit according to Two Bulls from her communications with the military was that they wanted to learn from the lessons of the past. The military source said it was a breakdown in leadership that caused the massacre. In a recent Denver post article on the May 3rd incident, Capt. Michael Odgers, a spokesman for the Colorado Army National Guard, said, "While the Battle of Wounded Knee is a dark chapter in the history of the Army, without learning from the mistakes of our past we are doomed to repeat them."
To learn more about this petition, or sign it, go to: