Indigenous parliamentarians sign a Declaration in Panama to advance in indigenous legal, social and participation matters

Apr 29, 2016

A total of 15 parliamentarians representing the countries of Bolivia, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua and Panama, were participating in the Congress. Photo: Nuria López / UNDP

Panama, April 29th 2016.- The “I Congress of Indigenous Parliament of America” has resulted in a Declaration signed by all parliamentarians, as a basis to promote the commitment of the parties to move forward in the implementation of the indigenous rights in America. You can find it attached (only in Spanish).

The agenda of the event has included five discussion panels on: 1) Follow up on implementarion of commitments made at the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples 2014, 2) 2030 Agenda Sustainable Development, 3) Climate change and indigenous peoples, 4) Indigenous women’s participation; and 5) Indigenous rights, right to prior consultation and territorial governance.

A total of 15 parliamentarians representing the countries of Bolivia, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua and Panama, were participating today in the Congress. The agenda with the total list of panelists are attached to this press release. Today, we can highlight the participation of Irune Aguirrezabal Quijera, agenda with the total list of panelists are attached to this press release. Today, we can highlight the participation of the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and Empowerment (UNWOMEN), and Deputy Amílcar de Jesús Pop Ac, WINAQ, Congress of Guatemala.

Context

The event took place in the context of the recent (September 2015) approval of the new 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda adopted by UN member states with the challenge of "leaving no one behind" and to fight against inequalities in human development, and also after the Paris Climate Change Conference (2015). Given the working lines arising from the outcome document of the World Summit of Indigenous Peoples (iPSC), the Declaration adopted at the "International Parliamentary Conference on Parliaments, minorities and indigenous peoples: Effective political participation" held in Chiapas, Mexico (2010), and the Declaration of Santa Cruz de la Sierra (2014) co-organized by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and the Plurinational Legislative Assembly of Bolivia, the Indigenous Parliament of America (PIA) was determined to organize the "I Congress of Indigenous Parliament of America" to discuss the progress and challenges in the promotion and implementation of indigenous peoples’s rights at the legislative level.

Indigenous Parliament of America (PIA) 

The Indigenous Parliament of America (PIA) was established in 1987, amid a wave of creation of regional parliaments in Latin America. So its creation can be due to the confluence of two trends going through the continent: First one, the emergence and intensification of the indigenous movement and, second, the generation of Latin American regional integration processes, which are piloting parliamentary experiences. It currently has 10 member countries and 8 in accession process: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, El Salvador, United States, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela.

The PIA is a continental and supranational, permanent body, where American Indigenous Parliamentarians discuss, visibilize the problems affecting indigenous peoples and propose appropriate measures to overcome them. It represents indigenous peoples of the North, Center and South of the continent and it’s formed by indigenous legislators who represent the legislative bodies of the America countries. It’s a multilateral organism that promotes freedom, peace, justice, gender equality, respect for human rights, welfare and development for the benefit of Indigenous peoples of America.

Contact Information

PIA: Valerio Abrego Jiménez, valerioabregojimenez@hotmail.com

National Assembly of Panama: Francilino Díaz, Chief Press Officer, fdiaz@asamblea.gob.pa  

UNDP: Nuria López, Communication Specialist for Governance and peacebuilding. UNDP Regional Hub for Latin America and the Caribbean, nuria.lopez@undp.org.

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