Joint Statement on behalf of a group of Like-minded Countries on Violation of Rights of Indigenous Children at the 50th Session of Human Rights Council
2022-07-06 21:48

(5 July)

Madam Vice President,

I have the honor to speak on behalf of a group of countries. We are deeply concerned at serious violation of human rights of indigenous people, especially indigenous children, by some countries.

Countries in question have in history conducted mass killings of indigenous people and committed genocide. In order to both physically and culturally eradicate indigenous people, these countries forcibly took indigenous children from their families and communities, and sent them to so-called “residential schools.” Indigenous children were forbidden from wearing traditional costumes, using traditional languages and scripts and maintaining traditional cultures, being deprived of their identity and cultural recognition. Indigenous children in “residential schools” suffered widespread abuses, many of whom died of hunger, disease, corporal punishment or sexual violence, with death toll remaining unknown to this day.

The cruel treatment against indigenous people, including indigenous children, by these countries is an important root cause of the prevailing systemic racism and racial discrimination. Today, indigenous people in these countries are still suffering from discrimination and inequality in various areas and their living conditions remain worrisome.

We urge these countries to conduct thorough investigations into their history of mutilation and abuse against indigenous children, bring justice and truth for indigenous groups, redress the victims, and alter laws and policies that discriminate indigenous people. We call upon the Human Rights Council and the OHCHR to continue to attend to human rights violations against indigenous people by countries in question and take necessary actions accordingly.

Thank you, Madam Vice President.

List of Cosponsors:

Belarus, Bolivia, Burundi, Cameroon, China, DPRK, Iran, Myanmar, Russian Federation, Sierra Leone, Syria, Venezuela