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Indigenous Peoples

The United Nations declared the decade 1994-2004 the International Decade of the Worlds' Indigenous Peoples. In 2004 the Assembly proclaimed a Second International Decade. The International Day of Indigenous Peoples is 9 August every year.


"The world's population of indigenous people now numbers some 350 million individuals representing over 5,000 languages and cultures in more than 70 countries on every continent. Many live on the fringes of society, in sometimes precarious and impoverished conditions. Their material, environmental and spiritual situations, together with their world-views and intimate relationship with the land and natural resources, are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of globalization. The resulting instability, aggravated by dispossession from their land and natural resources, has disrupted the handing down of their cultural heritage from one generation to the next."

UNESCO, "International Decade of the World's Indigenous People"


Selected full-text documents (for more, search in the Digital Library)

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Filed under:
creative commons logo (CC) BY-NC-ND This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 UK: England & Wales License.

Indigenous Mayan women in present-day Guatemala.

These returnee indigenous women show the traditional clothes they propose to make for sale. La Esmeralda, near Dolores, Peten
© UNHCR/B. Press.

Last updated Sep 06, 2011