Last month, the Philippines government placed UN Special Rapporteur on Indigenous Peoples Victoria Tauli-Corpuz on a list of “terrorists”, along with many other indigenous rights activists. Ironically, she was in the process of compiling a report on the criminalization of indigenous activists around the world, and will have to add her own case to that list.
Local and indigenous communities play a central role in protecting lands and forests. Their work can carry a heavy price, though: according to Global Witness and the Guardian 197 land and environmental defenders were murdered in 2017. The office of the Special Rapporteur has proven critical to amplifying these voices on the ground.
Vicky has been a tireless advocate for indigenous rights, in her own Philippines and across the world. She has visited countries where RF-US works, and met with a number of our partners – including communities affected by oil exploration and illegal logging in Peru, as well as communities facing violence in Brazil. Please read her statement here.
RF-US stands in solidarity with Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, Joan Carling, and the other activists under threat in the Philippines, and across the world.
What can you do? Please consider signing this change.org petition to President Duterte of the Philippines.