Three Challenges for the Inter-American System and the Right to Free, Prior, and Informed Consultation

Cristina Blanco*

Article published in the 22nd edition of Aportes.

Versión en español aquí.

In Latin America, few indigenous peoples’ rights have received as much attention as the right to free, prior, and informed consultation and consent (FPIC). In a region with enormous cultural diversity and high levels of social conflict associated with extractive and investment projects, indigenous peoples have used FPIC as a tool to resist the impacts of those projects on their territories. State authorities, the private sector, financial institutions, and other actors have also viewed prior consultation as a key tool for preventing social conflict.

Seguir leyendo

From the right to prior consultation to self-determination: reflections from the DPLF experience

Daniel Cerqueira*

Article published in the 22nd edition of Aportes.

Versión en español aquí.

An important part of DPLF’s work, through its Human Rights and Natural Resources program, has been to reinforce the inclusion of international standards on free, prior, and informed consultation (FPIC) in the norms, public policies, and case law of Latin American states. We have worked to provide legal support to civil society organizations (CSOs) and indigenous movements that are working to incorporate these standards into the laws and practices of their States. To this end, we have carried out advocacy activities, published case law digests, prepared specialized studies and analyses, monitored judicial proceedings, and filed amicus curiae briefs in emblematic cases.

Seguir leyendo

The Mayan Train Raises a New Leviathan in Mexico: Civil Society Organizations

David Lovatón Palacios*

Versión en español aquí.

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador recently embraced an unfounded smear campaign against civil society organizations (CSOs) and international foundations that have supported initiatives and decisions that—on legal grounds—challenge or oppose the “Mayan Train” mega-project in the Yucatán Peninsula and other states in southeastern Mexico. It seems that the president is beginning to suffer from the binary and decidedly authoritarian political syndrome seen in many Latin American rulers: either you’re with me or you’re against me.

Seguir leyendo

Indigenous self-determination and international law

Daniel Cerqueira*

Versión en español aquí.

Ver versões em português.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on indigenous peoples, along with the context of violence and territorial dispossession to their detriment, forces us to think of solutions from the most varied legal and political spheres. On the occasion of the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, celebrated on August 9, this essay summarizes the way in which international law has addressed self-determination, with an emphasis on the need to strengthen its application to indigenous peoples. This is because of the imperative to preserve the existence of such peoples and their cultures, and the need to mitigate the effects of environmental crises of which the exposure to pathogens displaced from their natural habitat – such as SARS-COVID-2 –  is only one manifestation.

Seguir leyendo