Friday, March 20, 2009

Dialogue on Indigenous Peoples’ Rights, Environment and Mining Issues: The Western Shoshone Peoples Experience

The Philippine Indigenous Peoples’ Links (PIPLINKS) together with Tebtebba Foundation, Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center, Inc.-Kasama sa Kalikasan (LRC-KsK) and Ugnayang Pang-AghamTao, Inc (UGAT) - Anthropological Association of the Philippines through the support of Broederlijk Delen cordially invites you to a forum:

Dialogue on Indigenous Peoples’ Rights, Environment and Mining Issues:
The Western Shoshone Peoples Experience

The forum will commence with the film showing of "Our Land, Our Life: The Struggle for Western Shoshone Land Rights" which tackles the long struggle for land of the Western Shoshone of Nevada against the US government and mining companies. A discussion will then follow with Julie Cavanaugh Bill, the lawyer of the Western Shoshone Defense Project and Larson Bill, a Shoshone leader, as well as the sharing of experiences from two Philippine indigenous groups, and reactions from UGAT and a support group.

The Western Shoshone has a long history of struggle against mining on their lands. Their concerns have included the activities of Barrick Gold, formerly Placer Dome, who operate the Cortez mine on Shoshone land. The Shoshone have successfully taken their case to the Inter American Court of Human Rights and the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, which has helped raise their concerns to the highest levels. However they remain, as yet, unable to gain justice, adequate redress or respect for their wishes. Along with other prominent cases of injustice against First Nations these matters are currently being raised both in the US Courts and in talks with the new US administration.

The Western Shoshone case reveals clearly the international nature of the suffering of indigenous peoples at the hands of large-scale mining development. It belies the idea that the Philippines is an isolated or exceptional victim of the global mining industry. Their case has been documented in a film prepared with the support of Oxfam USA . Representatives of the Western Shoshone are experienced in the international indigenous peoples movement. They have presented their case in different fora and used their film in presentations and discussions with audiences in the US and internationally.


Film Showing
Discussion of the film
Sharing of experiences from two Philippine indigenous groups
Reactions from Ugnayang Pang-AghamTao, Inc (UGAT) and a support group

Date: 22 March 2009 (Sunday)
Time: 2-5 pm
Venue: Balay Kalinaw, UP Diliman

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