U.N. Throws Native People a Bone
Posted on Sep 13, 2007
After 22 years of debate and opposition (not to mention centuries of exploitation and genocide), the United Nations has finally approved the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, a nonbinding treaty meant to promote the human, territory and resource rights of native people around the world. Only four nations voted against the measure: the U.S., Australia, Canada and New Zealand.
The Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples calls on countries to give more control to tribal peoples over the land and resources they traditionally possessed, and to return confiscated territory, or pay compensation.
The General Assembly passed it, with 143 countries voting in favour and 11 abstaining.
Four nations—Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United States—each with large indigenous populations, voted against.