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Central African indigenous people protest "cultural genocide"
The first international forum of autochton/indigenous peoples (Pygmies) of Central Africa was held in Congo-Brazzaville at the initiative of the government earlier this month. The goal of the forum was to draw attention to the discrimination faced by those communities in Gabon, Cameroon, CAR, Burundi, Rwanda, DRC, Uganda and Congo, including forced expulsion from their land to make way for forest concessions and protected areas. Representatives from the communities are trying to gain the recognition of their traditional and ancestral rights over their lands, forests and natural resources. Specifically, they are asking for a quick and fair compensation for the lands and forests that have been taken from them, as well as a transparent and fair share of the revenues associated with the exploitation of forest resources.
The complete declaration made by the conference participants is available online (in French).
A summary of the proceedings on forest management can be found on the WWF website.
Posted By Anne-Sophie Samjee at 9:24am on April 24, 2007
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