Indigenous Peoples Still Face Exclusion, Vulnerability Despite Recent Progress, More than 40 United Nations Agencies Say in Joint Statement

Ten years after the adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, progress has been made in terms of the formal recognition of indigenous peoples in several countries, but they overwhelmingly continue to face discrimination, marginalization and major challenges in enjoying their basic rights.

“While indigenous peoples have made significant advancements in advocating for their rights in international and regional fora, implementation of the Declaration is impeded by persisting vulnerability and exclusion, particularly among indigenous women, children, youth and persons with disabilities,” more than 40 United Nations system entities and other international organizations said in a joint statement.

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Join Our Exciting Campaign with Twitter – UN International Day for the World’s Indigenous People’s August 9

This year marks the 10 Year Anniversary of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 13 September 2007. The Declaration established a universal framework of minimum standards for the survival, dignity, and well-being of indigenous peoples. The landmark document is the most comprehensive international instrument on indigenous peoples’ rights, including the rights to
self-determination, traditional lands, territories and resources, education, culture, health and development.

To elevate the profile of the anniversary on social media, the United Nations Department of Public Information is partnering with Twitter to create and promote a branded emoji that will be live from 8 August to 15 September, covering both International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples (9 August) and the actual date of the adoption of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (13 September).

Join in the conversation and help us raise awareness of this important day by doing the following:

Use hashtags: We have ten hashtags that will activate the special emoji. Tweet and include one (or more!) of the following hashtags to join in the conversation!

#WeAreIndigenous #SomosIndígenas #autochtones #IndigenousDay #UNDRIP #DIPI2017 #PueblosIndígenas #DíaPueblosIndígenas #SomosIndígenas #SoyIndígena

Tweet with photos: We’ve created a number of photos featuring the emoji and important facts about International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Tweet using these photos to get the message out there. Link for photo download here.

Follow on Twitter: Make sure to follow follow @UN4Indigenous, @UN, and @UNICCanberra for updates. Twitter will be also be driving this conversation through their official handles @Policy, @TwitterGov, @TwitterAU, and @TwitterLatAm.

For more information about International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, visit the UN website to find out more.

Note to Correspondents on the Paris Climate Change Agreement

In answers to questions received, I can confirm that today, 4 August 2017,
the Secretary-General received, in his capacity as Depositary of the Paris Agreement, a communication from the Permanent Representative of the United States of America expressing the intention of the United States to exercise its right to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, as soon as it is eligible to do so under the Agreement, unless it identifies suitable terms for reengagement. The Secretary General welcomes any effort to reengage in the Paris Agreement by the United States.

Under article 28 of the Paris Agreement, a Party may withdraw at any time after three years from the date on which the Agreement has entered into force for that Party, and such withdrawal takes effect upon expiry of one year from the date of receipt by the Depositary of the notification of withdrawal. The United States accepted the Paris Agreement on 3 September 2016 and the Agreement entered into force for the United States on 4 November 2016.

The Secretary-General will circulate the text of this communication as a depositary notification, in English and French, early next week.

As the Secretary-General said in a statement on 1 June 2017, the decision by the United States to withdraw from the Paris Agreement is a major disappointment for global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote global security. It is crucial that the United States remains a leader on climate and sustainable development. Climate change is impacting now. He looks forward to engaging with the American government and all other actors in the United States and around the world to build the sustainable future for our children and future generations.

Stéphane Dujarric
Spokesman for the Secretary-General

New York
4 August 2017

ISIL’s ‘genocide’ against Yazidis is ongoing, UN rights panel says, calling for international action

Marking three years since the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh) attacked the Yazidis in Syria, a United Nations-mandated inquiry has called for justice and rescue plans.

“The Commission of Inquiry calls on the international community to recognize the crime of genocide being committed by ISIL against the Yazidis and to undertake steps to refer the situation to justice,” said the expert panel in a statement marking the third anniversary of ISIL’s attack on the Yazidis.

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UN Secretary-General’s Spokesman on UNHabitat

The Secretary-General welcomes the report of the High Level Independent Panel to Assess and Enhance the Effectiveness of UNHabitat, which was drafted in response to General Assembly Resolution A/RES/71/256. The Secretary-General thanks the Panel members for their robust, evidence-based assessment of the agency.

The Secretary-General appreciates the recommendations put forth by the Panel on better ways to address urbanization, a global mega-trend that is putting pressure on communities, infrastructure and the environment, and on how UNHabitat and the UN system can reform to become fit for purpose in cities.

The Secretary-General finds many of the recommendations in line with his own proposals for the reform of the UN Development System, particularly the establishment of “UN Urban,” aimed at fostering more collaborative work by UN agencies in the revamped UN Country Teams, and the alignment of UNHabitat’s regional offices with the new policy integration functions of the Regional Economic Commissions.

He also acknowledges the recommendations for changes to UNHabitat’s governance, and agrees that the agency must be equipped with a flexible, efficient structure that delivers for the most vulnerable residents of the world’s cities. He recognizes the challenges with universal membership as well as the importance of articulating a definitive normative and operational mandate for the organisation, and looks forward to further discussions with member states about this recommendation.

The Secretary-General considers rapid urbanization and its links with poverty, inequality, public health, migration, climate change and natural disasters to be one of the most pressing concerns of the United Nations. He therefore appreciates the strong relationship between the assessment of UNHabitat and the overall reform of the UN Development System. He thanks the High-Level Panel for its compelling ideas, and looks forward to further discussions with Member States on ambitious reforms that will help the human family to meet the urban tests of our time.

Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General

New York, 03 August 2017

Media Advisory – Discrimination against women: First mission ever to Samoa by a UN human rights expert group

APIA / GENEVA (3 August 2017) – A United Nations human rights expert group will carry out a fact-finding visit to Samoa from 8 to 18 August to assess the progress made towards eliminating discrimination against women and the protection and promotion of women’s rights in the country.

“We are particularly interested in legislative and policy reforms undertaken in recent years and the impact on the enjoyment of human rights of women in Samoa,” said human rights expert Kamala Chandrakirana, who currently heads UN Working Group on discrimination against women in law and in practice.

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Adopting new resolution, UN Security Council moves to thwart terrorists’ access to weapons

The United Nations Security Council today unanimously adopted a resolution aimed at preventing terrorists from acquiring weapons, particularly small arms and light weapons, the “destabilizing accumulation and misuse” of which the 15-member body said “continue to pose threats to international peace and security and cause significant loss of life.” More