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Uganda: 'Batwa may be poor, but they have immense cultural wealth' 

The tiny village of Nteko is set atop a 2000 metre-high hill, with stunning views of distant misty lakes and verdant valleys. Yet for Batwa this paradise is a living hell.You may well know Batwa as Pygmies, their more common, but derogatory name. Batwa have lived as hunter gatherers in the forests of south-west Uganda for millennia, depending on their forest home not only...

Georgia: Photo exhibition highlights fragile Dukhobor culture 

On 20th of March, 2014 Europe House hosted a photo exhibition entitled “Dukhobors in Georgia” by the famous Georgian photographer Natela Grigalashvili. The exhibition was held within the framework of the Regional Art and Culture project in the South Caucasus. The Dukhobors are a Russian ethno-religious group that has inhabited the Ninotsminda municipality of the Samtskhe Javakheti region of Georgia, bordering with...

Namibia: Himba people protest against dam and attempted bribery 

By Rebecca Sommer, for Earth Peoples For over a decade, the indigenous Himba Peoples from Namibia have objected to the construction of the Baynes Hydro Power Plant in Orokawe, Namibia. To voice their objections, they've written letters to the head of state and other relevant governmental authorities, filed complaint procedures at the United Nation with the help of EARTH PEOPLES reports, and carried...

UN: Appointment of Special Rapporteur reflects important place of minority rights in UN system, MRG 

On 27 March, the Human Rights Council adopted by consensus a resolution proposed by Austria, renewing the mandate of the United Nations Independent Expert on Minority Issues, and converting it into a Special Rapporteur on Minority Issues.‘MRG welcomes this change of name, which amounts to a symbolic upgrade, and affirms the important place given to the rights of persons belonging to minorities in the...

Armenia: Young minority leader preserves Yezidi identity and language  

Boris Murazi-Tamoyan, 24 years old, is an active community leader representing the Yezidi minority of Armenia. Boris was born in Armenia; has graduated from the Academy of Television and Radio, as well as served for 2 years at the national military. He speaks Armenian and Russian languages fluently. However, his native language is Yezidi (Kurmanji).In 2011, Boris along with his friends established the Yezidi...

Cameroon: UN experts on minorities and indigenous peoples concerned about destruction of pastoralist homes  

GENEVA (10 April 2014) - The United Nations Special Rapporteurs on minority issues, Rita Izsák, and on the rights of indigenous peoples, James Anaya, today called on the Government and the Catholic University in Bamenda, Cameroon, to urgently review the evictions and demolition of houses of a Mbororo pastoralist community. An estimated 300 people have reportedly been made homeless and evicted from their ancestral...

UK: Chagossians protest MPA outside UK Court of Appeal 

Click on the gallery to see photos of a protest on 31 March by Chagos Islanders outside the UK Court of Appeal in central London. The Court met to hear a challenge to the creation of the Chagos Marine Protected Area.In 2010 the UK government created the world's largest marine reserve around the Chagos Islands, an archipelago in the Indian Ocean. The Islands' original...

Iran: April 20 marked as the day of the Ahwazi revolution 

According to the British Middle East Center for Studies and Research (BMCSR) 3000 Members of EU’s Ahwazi Arab community gathered yesterday outside the European Parliament to protest against the recent executions of Arab political prisoners. The protesters also condemned Iranian occupation of their land.Ahwazis voiced their support for the EU parliament call for UN Special Rapporteur on Iran Ahmed Shaheed to enter Iran and assess...

Tanzania: Maasai Villagers Win Fight For Information about Land-Grabs and Forced Eviction 

APRIL 21, 2014, BOSTON — A high-end safari operator must turn over documents and testimony about alleged land-grabbing and violence to the leaders of three Maasai villages in Tanzania, according to an order issued Friday by a federal magistrate judge in Boston. The villagers, assisted by EarthRights International (ERI), petitioned to receive this evidence in order to support their fight in the Tanzanian courts...

Photo story: Peoples under Threat 2014 

The Peoples under Threat index identifies those countries around the world where communities face the greatest risk of genocide, mass killing or systematic violent repression.It provides early warning of potential future mass atrocities.The Middle East and Africa dominate the list of major risers in the index this year.The war in Syria, whichhas risen dramatically up the table to now rankthird, continues to fragment, and...

New Video: Peoples under Threat 2014 - interview with MRG Executive Director 

 New online map shows Middle East, Africa states dominate Peoples under Threat 2014 survey on risk of mass killing.Syria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Yemen, South Sudan, Central African Republic and Egypt are among the most significant risers in this year's internationally acclaimed global ranking Peoples under Threat, published each year by Minority Rights Group International (MRG).This film features an interview with Mark Lattimer, MRG's...

USA: An Affirmation Poem Written For Minorities 

A short poem by Donna Henes to affirm her "positive minority status".An Affirmation Poem Written For MinoritiesI affirm I am a divine and beautiful being.I choose to live each moment with appreciation andcomplete acceptance of my own identity, divinity and beauty. I choose to appreciate and accept the beauty in allbeings and the perfect divinity in each moment. I open my heart to the...

Egypt: TEDx talk - A Love-Hate Relationship with Revolution 

Sarah El Ashmawy, MRG's Egypt Programme Coordinator, recently gave a talk at TEDx Exeter about the 2011 uprising in her country.Sarah El Ashmawy left Egypt one week before the popular uprising of 2011. Her realisation that she had become disconnected from her country led her to return and conduct conversations about responses to the revolution and its outcomes, and why it is so important...

Philippines: Bajao Community in the Aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan 

Typhoon Haiyan, the strongest storm ever recorded to make landfall, hit the Philippines in the early morning hours of November 8, 2013, leaving unimaginable infrastructural devastation and human suffering in its wake. The Bajao community, living in the municipality of Isabel on Leyte Island, was one of the hardest hit communities.The article (click on link below to read) explores recovery efforts and proposed relocation...

Burma: Press release by people forcibly relocated due to Myitsone Dam project 

26 March, 2014Mungchying Rawt Jat (MRJ)On March 12, 2014, local people in Aung Myin Tha relocation camp, who had been moved to make way for the Myitsone Dam, carried out a referendum asking people to choose between whether they “Liked” or “Did Not Like” the Myitsone Dam. The aim was to show the real wishes of the affected people.In total, 1,160 people aged over...

Burma: Drug use and rights abuses in Burma's ethnic areas out of control 

The only men who aren’t using drugs in Palaung area are the monks, said a report by Palaung Women Organization (PWO). 91% of young people in Palaung area aged 15 and over are addicted to drugs, added Lway Poe Ngeal, joint general secretary of the local women’s rights group.Poe* is a 25 year old Palaung woman who left Burma for better education opportunities in...

Kenya: Preparing for REDD in the Embobut Forest and forcing Sengwer People “into extinction” 

Last year the Government of Kenya was getting “ready” for REDD in the Embobut Forest, now it is violently evicting the Sengwer People and forcing them “into extinction.” According to Survival International, “as many as a thousand homes have already been torched.”Sengwer spokesman Yator Kiptum denounced the “disaster” caused by combined force of the Kenya Forest Service and Administration Police, a paramilitary unit of...

Philippines: Indigenous women express support for Andrea Rosal 

In a protest action at the gates of Camp Crame this morning, traditionally-clad indigenous women demanded the release of Andrea Rosal, a suspected communist leader and the daughter of renowned Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army leader Ka Roger Rosal. The indigenous women, from the BAI Network of Indigenous Women, expressed condemnation at the “lack of humanity extended by state forces” to Rosal....

Turkey: European Syriac Union present annual report on Syriac to EU Commission 

European Syriac Union, ESU presented its annual report entitled “The situation of the Syriac in Turkey-2014” to European Commission Enlargement authorities.ESU Belgium Head Tony Vergili and member of Foreign Affairs Committee David Vergili met with Mr. Christos Makridis to hand ESU report and present latest information regarding the situation, their demands of Syriac people in Turkey and their expectations from the European authorities.Tony Vergili...

SWM 2014: Kenya/Tanzania - Defending land rights in the face of hate speech 

Case study by Laura A. YoungIn their efforts to secure their land rights, indigenous peoples regularly become the subject of hate speech and hate crimes. Like other human rights defenders and like many marginalized groups, when they speak out or take other action to defend their rights indigenous peoples find themselves charged with crimes such as incitement to violence, criminal trespass or hate speech....


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