2017 HLPF : Land rights as a way to achieve Sustainable Development Goals

Wednesday, 12th July 2017

As 2017 High Level Political Forum takes place in New York during 10-19 July 2017, ASIA takes its position to ensure that Land Rights is one of the crucial element to achieve the SDGs.

Represented by fifteen indigenous peoples’ representatives from various Asian countries, including Bangladesh, Nepal, India and Malaysia, where the ILC Asia members, Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact (AIPP) and Kapaeeng Foundation (KF) were involved, the rights of the Indigenous Peoples over their land and natural resources is at the high relevance of the 2017 theme for the Indigenous Community.

As this event brings the theme, “Eradicating poverty and promoting prosperity in a changing world”, AIPP emphasized that currently, Indigenous Peoples across Asia remaining categorized as the poorest of the poor, due to lost control over their land and resources and their own development.

“Unfortunately, the SDG indicator 1.4.2 on land tenure security is currently classified under Tier III, which means that there is no standard methodology for gathering data and is still being developed. This reflects the severity of the status and situation regarding collective land tenure security worldwide.”

The Statement was delivered by the Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact Secretary General, Gam Shimray, as being reported in their press release.

As also reported by Tahal Thami of Lawyers’ Association for Human Rights of Nepalese Indigenous Peoples (LAHURNIP), many development projects in Nepal, such as hydropower and road expansion, taking place on their ancestral lands with no Prior and Informed Consent, and have destroyed their sacred places, cultural heritage and livelihood security.

Added by Gam Shimray of AIPP, it is curcial to set the system, allowing the IPs to reach the SDGs under the institutions, policies and programmes, which are accessible to indigenous communities and other marginalized groups.

This event also allows eleven countries from Asia to be part of the Voluntary National Review process. These countries will be presenting the progress of SDGs planning and implementation at their country levels.

News source and photo courtesy by AIPP