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Poznan “Sad and Frustrating”

Published: December 11, 2008, Author: MHirch

Poznan, Poland 11 December Thursday — On this day before the final sessions of the United Nations Framework Conference of Parties meeting on Climate Change can only be described as a failure.  It may be publicly portrayed as a moderate success, but the truth is there is no consensus among the parties. The States do not agree on carbon emission reduction targets, corporations and environmental groups are in fundamental disagreement and indigenous peoples have been largely frozen out of.

Indigenous peoples meeting in their caucus prepared a statement to the conference that was to be delivered yesterday (Wednesday).  That statement called on the conference to officially establish an Experts Group of Indigenous Peoples on Climate Change and recognition by the United Nations conference that it must apply the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The public session call SBSTA was to hear the indigenous peoples’ presentation…it was not heard due to scheduling error. Efforts had been made to get various states (including Bolivia) to give voice to Indigenous peoples’ views. At the meeting of states’ government representatives no effort was made to express views regarding indigenous peoples.

Tom Goldtooth of the Indigenous Environmental Network in the United States was selected by the Indigenous Caucus to deliver a final statement before the Conference of Parties on 12 December. The statement will say that the failure of the conference to recognized indigenous peoples and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples “is insufficient and offensive and creates a major obstacle for recognizing Indigenous peoples’ rights.” Indigenous delegates were returning to their homes “saddened and frustrated” according to many who spoke in the Indigenous Caucus.

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