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Draft Statement Law-Defense 06232010 Final (2)

Draft Statement Law-Defense 06232010 Final (2)

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Published by: indigifem on Sep 15, 2010
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09/15/2010

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STATEMENT OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES OF THE TEXAS-MEXICO BORDER,LOWER RIO GRANDE RIVER, EL CALABOZ RANCHERÍA,TO THE U.S. SOCIAL FORUM (2010) REPRESENTATIVES
 
Greetings!The Lipan Apache Women Defense (LAW-Defense), an Indigenous Peoples Organization(IPO), established in 2007, and a Texas-Mexico border human rights working group, co-founded byEloisa Garcia Tamez and Margo Tamez, is located in the heartland of 
 Nde' shimaa hada'didla ('lands of the lightning people clans)
, in El Calaboz Rancheria. We exercise the right to pursue all the venuesavailable and to create new ones for the application of customary laws of Indigenous peoples, humanrights and international law, and the
United Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
(UNDRIP).LAW-Defense welcomes and invites partnerships to work productively for
Indigenous Peoples‟ pursuit of 
self-determination, land and natural resources, cultural rights and sacred sites protection, subsistence,Treaty rights, health and social services, non-discrimination, environmental protection, education,language, and many others which Indigenous Peoples identified as essential to their dignity, survival andwell-
 being.”
1
 At this time, LAW-Defense calls upon our sisters and brothers participating in the 2010 U.S. SocialForum to join us in the sustained interrogation of the human rights violations committed by the UnitedStates of America along the Texas-Mexico border in its construction of an 18 foot tall steel, concretereinforced wall across Indigenous Peoples lands.LAW-Defense calls upon the U.S. Social Forum participants to support the self-determination processesof the diverse Indigenous communities who are directly impacted and irreparably harmed by the U.S.border wall construction which unfolded, between 2006-2009 in community-held lands.We call upon you to work productively and in partnership to articulate this year, at the 2010 U.S. SocialForum, the multiple ways in which the U.S.-Mexico border militarization and the Texas-Mexico borderwall impacts workers, families, women, children, elders, the sick, rural agrarian societies, subsistencesocieties, family-based livelihoods, traditional trade and commerce, biodiversity, traditional stewardshipof sacred sites and natural resources, the dissemination of both traditional and contemporary knowledgesystems, and the human rights of Indigenous peoples with Aboriginal Title across the vast region.(Articles 20 and 21, UNDRIP)
1
Internat
ional Indian Treaty Council, Statement, “The United States Reviewing its Position on the Declaration onthe Rights of Indigenous Peoples: Background and Points for Input,” June 23, 2010.
 
 
 We call upon you to join us in a sustained and firm request to the U.S. government for the
reversal
andimmediate
dismantling
of the U.S. border wall
in Indigenous peoples‟ lands
. We are calling for theremoval of all militarized forces and technologies of surveillance and destruction to life in Indigenouscommunity spaces. We are also calling upon the social justice communities to partner with us in our firmrequests for the immediate
return
of the seized lands of Indigenous Peoples.In our sustained investigations into the actions of President George W. Bush and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Michael Chertoff in the Lower Rio Grande Valley (2007-2008), andthe policy of 
President Barack Obama‟s administration in continuing the Bush policies of 
discrimination,criminalization, and peripheralization of Indigenous peoples along the Texas-Mexico border, we call uponthe social justice community of the U.S. Social Forum to deepen its analysis of the U.S.-Mexico border asa
key site
of U.S. human rights violations, historically and on-going. In particular, new levels of landseizures, the implantation of military checkpoints, drones, and increased military-style soldiering on theground, are just a few of technologies and methodologies threatening Indigenous Peoples communitiesalong the
U.S. southern border.
LAW-Defense calls upon the U.S. Social Forum participants, delegates, and organizing leadership to joinus in our continuing demands for consultation and Free and Prior Informed Consent (Article 19,UNDRIP) on the continuing matter of legal and community-led investigations of the U.S. border wall,and resulting dispossession, displacement and destruction of cultural and sacred sites, destruction to soil,riparian pathways, farmlands, ranchlands, in addition to permanent destruction to Indigenous Peoplesrights to commerce, trade, freedom of movement, and rights to steward the land, and to flourish.We are calling upon our sisters and brothers of the U.S. Social Forum to join Indigenous Peoples inaccepting nothing less than President Barack Obama
‟s full acceptance and recognition of 
the
United  Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
, (UNDRIP), as it provides a framework forproblem-solving and conflict resolution. The UNDRIP
will “constitu
te the minimum standards for thesurvival, dignity and well-
 being of the indigenous peoples of the world” (Article 43).
The traditional Lipan Apache Peoples of the Lower Rio Grande and South Texas earnestly call upon theU.S. Social Forum representatives to join us in our firm requests to President Barack Obama, the StateDepartment, and the invited U.S. Federally Recognized Tribes and NGOs to steer and re-direct the currentU.S. administrative review of the
United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
 beyond the delimiting framework of "Federally Recognized Tribes" and "NGOs."We firmly assert that the U.S. review of the UNDRIP must break away from historical discriminatorypatterns deployed against a large majority of Indigenous Peoples residing within U.S. geopolitical borderswithin normative rights and sovereignty discourse.We assert that the current U.S. review of the UNDRIP, in order to maintain dignity and legitimacy amongthe diversity of the actual U.S. population of Indigenous Peoples, must align itself 
 publically
and
meaningfully
with:
“Indigenous peoples and individuals have the right to belong to an indigenous community or nation, in
accordance with the traditions and customs of the community or nation concerned. No discrimination of 
any kind may arise from the exercise of such a right.”
(Article 9, UNDRIP)And
 
“Indigenous peoples have the right to participate in decision
-making in matters which would affect theirrights, through representatives chosen by themselves in accordance with their own procedures, as well asto maintain and develop their own indigenous decision-
making institutions.” (Article 18)
 The above is in recognition of the discursive exclusion of the representatives of more than 230 terminated"Federally
Un
recognized Tribes", their treaties and other constructive arrangements with the State; andexclusion of Indigenous peoples with historical ties to the U.S. history of violent occupation, war,annexation, territorialization, and internment who are explicitly
not 
articulated in the U.S. State
Department‟s recent invitation to only “U.S. Federally Recognized Tribes” and “NGOs” as consultants.
 This effectively marginalizes Indigenous peoples across current U.S. geopolitical spaces who havehistorically remained on the fringes of government-to-government relations, and who are minoritizednormatively as "Unrepresented", "Terminated", "De-enrolled", "Deported", "Detained",
“Stateless”
and
„Outsiders‟ both
within and along U.S. borders.We are calling upon the social justice community to
demand 
that the U.S. formal review process of theUNDRIP break the chains of colonial, discriminatory policies against
all
Indigenous Peoples. We call fora transparent process which does not privilege any group of Indigenous Peoples, and which fostersegalitarian and horizontal mechanisms, and works to decolonize U.S. historical erasure towardsIndigenous Peoples broadly and specifically
 — 
within the current process of the U.S. review of theUNDRIP.Furthermore, we call upon those
 privileged by the U.S. State Department‟s invitation to
the U.S. officialreview of UNDRIP to reflect and weigh the multiple peripheries of 'Native American' and U.S.'citizenship' as markers of Indigenous privilege
within
U.S. ideological frameworks. We assert thatmultitudes of Indigenous Peoples exist violently at the peripheries of U.S. Federal Recognition, and at thefringes of U.S. Native American heterosexual, conservative, male identity.We call upon the U.S. Social Forum to articulate how the UNDRIP applies specifically to therelationships we are to build between the Indigenous peoples of 
 Idszan Shimaa Nde' 
[Mother Earth] andthe colonized and decolonizing descendents of the U.S. Settler Society in order to strengthen the verytenets and meanings of 
dignified
relations in which to construct a just world. LAW-Defense holds thatthis would explicitly begin with the U.S. Social Forum acknowledging and adopting the UNDRIP as afundamental charter to infuse a new working relationship between Indigenous Peoples in the U.S. theU.S.-Mexico border, and the Western Hemisphere. As such, the LAW-Defense calls upon theparticipants of the U.S. Social Forum to address the following pertinent articles of the UNDRIP [thoughnot limited to] as they relate to Indigenous Peoples impacted directly and irreparably harmed by U.S.economic development operating hand-in-glove with a sustained program of militarization along the U.S.-Mexico border:ARTICLE 1: Indigenous peoples have the right to the full enjoyment, as a collective or as individuals, of all human rights and fundamental freedoms as recognized in the Charter of the United Nations, theUniversal Declaration of Human Rights and international human rights laws.ARTICLE 3: Indigenous peoples have the right to self-determination. By virtue of that right they freelydetermine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development.ARTICLE 7: 1. Indigenous individuals have the rights to life, physical and mental integrity, liberty andsecurity of person. 2. Indigenous peoples have the collective right to live in freedom, peace and securityas distinct peoples and shall not be subjected to any act of genocide or any other act of violence, includingforcibly removing children of the group to another group.

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