Indigenous peoples are the most marginalized groups in the Americas. Trapped in a cycle of exclusion, discrimination, poverty, underdevelopment and violence as consequence of colonial conquest, atrocity crimes and assimilationist policies. Although international and domestic legal frameworks have been advancing toward indigenous rights protections, discriminatory practices and economic interests persist, contributing to continued systematic dispossession of indigenous traditional territories and violations of fundamental rights of indigenous peoples throughout the region. On the one hand, this paper will discuss how the dispute over ancestral lands, fueled by economic interest, provide context for the occurrence of atrocities against indigenous peoples. On the other hand, it will analyze to what extent the reluctance of Brazilian state to title and demarcate these lands is accountable for the perpetuation of the violence against indigenous peoples.
There has always been a conflictive relationship between indigenous people and the Peruvian State. This presentation focuses on two topics that show the current physical violence against indigenous communities. On one hand, high levels of socio-environmental conflicts over the last 15 years on indigenous territories (due to the presence of poorly managed extractive projects), with a high level of police repression against them. On the other hand, current threats by mafias to indigenous leaders’ lives and the normal development of their communities. This problem shows a lack of effective protection and questions the government’s role in controlling illegal activities. Finally, it is important to overlook the role of transnational companies in this context and possible actions that can be taken to help strengthen the protection of members of indigenous peoples.
Propelled by the force of various transnational NGOs, especially La Via Campesina, the 2018 UN Declaration on the Rights of Peasants, and other People Working in Rural Areas (UNDROP) altered the land scape of Human Rights Law by recognizing a new group for protection, that departs from the traditional identity categories. Peasants as a group especially protected by Human Rights coincide with other protected groups such as women and indigenous peoples. Intersectionality can very well resolve some of the problems related with women farmers, but for indigenous farmers it seems more complicated. Following the use of UNDROP in local court decisions in Colombia this paper tries to explore the possible use and the shortcomings of peasant subjectivity by indigenous peoples in the greater Amazonian region, focusing on Brazil and Colombia, in their resistance against land concentration and infrastructure created to sustain and connect global agricultural production chains with the Amazon.
The covid 19 pandemic has undoubtedly affected all societies on our planet, however, it should be noted that some human groups have been much more affected than others, given the situation of vulnerability in which they find themselves. An example of this are the Latin American indigenous peoples, who for centuries have been fighting for the recognition of their rights. In the case of most Brazilian indigenous communities, not only cultural practices, but also subsistence economic activities, develop collectively. Thus, policies that demand social isolation directly affect the cultural identity of these peoples. It is not a question of ignoring the need for isolation to combat the transmission of the virus, but of showing the need for the adoption of parallel policies capable of reducing the negative impacts of its implementation.
In 2008 Chile recognized the history of violence against Mapuche people officially. In its final report, the Historical Truth and New Deal Commission declared that Chile occupied Mapuche lands militarily, recommending a set of reparations policies. It seemed to inaugurate a new era of relationships between Mapuche communities and the state. However, violence has recently resurged in diverse ways with different features from the mere military occupation of the past. This new era is based on more subtle and disguised formulas, such as repressive public order policies, incarceration of community leaders or even private violence with state’s indifference. In line with the panel, this presentation aims to analyze the resurgence of violence against Mapuche people in Chile. It also explores strategies to deal with it, approaching violence against indigenous peoples as a shared Latin American issue.
Since the establishment of the 1991’s multiethnic Constitution and a considerable amount of indigenous juridical protection that followed it, colonialist ideas of discrimination seemed to dissipate. Subsequently, the Peace Agreement of 2016 emerged as an effective mechanism for protecting the rights of the indigenous peoples. Even so, arguing that the reality of this population is considerably different is problematic. With 4,508 cases of human rights violations reported in indigenous territories between November of 2016 and July of 2017 and more than 242 murdered indigenous leaders since the Peace Agreement, the Constitution of 1991 and its successive legal instruments are struggling to effectively protect indigenous peoples’ rights. At this point, one might wonder if the Constitution is nothing but a mere reflection of the very arranged discriminatory ideas that date from the conquest.