III Continental Summit of Indigenous Peoples and Nationalities of Abya Yala
March 26-30, 2007
Mandate of Indigenous Peoples and Native Nations to the States of the World
Chimoré, Cochabamba - Bolivia, 12th October, 2007
From the heart of South America, on this 12th day of the month of October, 2007, the delegates of indigenous peoples and native nations of the world, having met at the World Encounter: “For the Historic Victory of Indigenous Peoples of the World”, to celebrate the approval of the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, we express our word:
That after 515 years of oppression and domination, we are still here, in spite of all the efforts to eliminate us. We have faced and resisted policies of ethnocide, genocide, colonization, destruction and pillage as well as the imposition of economic systems such as capitalism, characterized by interventionism, wars, and socio-environmental disasters, a system which continues to threaten our ways of life as Peoples.
That as a consequence of neoliberal policies of domination of nature, of a quest for easy profits for the concentration of capital held in the hands of the few and the irrational exploitation of natural resources, our Mother Earth is mortally wounded, while we Indigenous Peoples continue being dislocated from our territories. The planet is warming. We are living a climate change without precedent, where socio-environmental disasters are increasingly stronger and more frequent, where we are all, without exception, affected.
That we are endangered by an energy crisis, where the Age of Oil is about to conclude without having found an alternative clean energy that would substitute it in sufficient quantities so as to maintain “Western Civilization”, which has made us totally dependent on hydrocarbons.
That this situation could be a menace leaving us exposed to the danger of imposed neoliberal policies unleashing wars for the last drops of the so-called black gold and blue gold, but it could also offer us the opportunity to make of this new millennium a millennium for life, a millennium of balance and complementarity, without having to abuse energies which destroy Mother Earth.
That both the natural resources as well as the lands and territories which we inhabit belong to us by history, by birth, by right and forever, thus self-determination over these is fundamental in order to maintain our life, science, knowledge, spirituality, organization, medicine and food sovereignty.
That a new era is beginning and is propelled by indigenous native peoples, giving birth to a time of change, to the time of Pachakuti, (the time that returns) in times of the culmination of the Fifth Sun.
That we salute the approval of the Declaration of the United Nations for the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which is essential for the survival and well-being of the over 370 millions of indigenous people, in about 70 countries of the world. After a near thirty-year struggle, our historic demands for the self-determination of Indigenous Peoples, the recognition of such and collective rights are finally being addressed.
The approved Declaration contains a group of principles and norms which recognize and establish within the international legal framework the fundamental rights of Indigenous Peoples, which should be the basis of a new relationship between Indigenous Peoples, States, societies and worldwide cooperation. Therefore, aside from the other legal instruments relative to human rights already in existence, the Declaration is the new normative and practical basis to guarantee and protect the rights of Indigenous Peoples in various settings and levels.
We exhort the member countries of the United Nations and bolster indigenous peoples to fullfill and put into practice this important instrument of historic significance. We censure those governments who voted against the Declaration of the United Nations for the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and we condemn their double morality.
That we commit to supporting the history-making efforts led by our brother Evo Morales, President of the Indigenous Peoples of Abya Yala, building a new plurinational State. We will remain vigilant of any internal or external threat to Bolivia and we request the support and solidarity of all peoples of the planet for this process, which should serve as an example so all Peoples, Nations and States of the world can continue on this same path.
Therefore, the Indigenous Peoples and Nations of the world demand the States to fulfill the following mandates:
1. Construct a world based on the Culture of Life, on the identity, philosophy, worldview and the millennial spirituality of indigenous native peoples, applying this knowledge and ancestral wisdom in consolidating the processes of exchange and relations between nations and in respect for self-determination.
2. Assume national and international decisions to save Mother Earth of the disasters provoked by capitalism in its’ decadence, manifested in global warming and the environmental crisis; reaffirming that native indigenous culture is the only alternative to save our planet earth.
3. Substitute present models of development based on capitalism, commodification, irrational exploitation of humanity and natural resources, in energy waste and consumerism, through models which place life, complementarity, reciprocity, respect of cultural diversity and sustainable use of natural resources as the main priorities.
4. Apply national policies regarding Food Sovereignty as a main basis of National Sovereignty, though which the community guarantees the respect of its’ own culture as well as their spaces and own means of production, distribution and consumption of healthy and contamination-free food in balance with nature for the entire population, thus eliminating hunger as food is a right to life.
5. Repudiate plans and projects of the generation of energy such as biofuel as it destroys and denies food to peoples. We also condemn the use of genetically modified seeds as they do away with our millenary seeds and force us to depend on agro-industry.
6. Value and foster the role of indigenous native women as the vanguard in the liberation struggles of our peoples following the principles of duality, equality and equity in the man woman relationship.
7. Assume the Culture of Peace and Life as a guide to resolve the problems and conflicts of the world, renouncing to the arms race, and initiating disarmament in order to guarantee the preservation of life on the planet.
8. Assume just and legal transformations necessary to construct systems and means of communication and information based on our communal worldview, spirituality and philosophy, in the wisdom of our ancestors. Guarantee the recognition of the right to communication and information of indigenous peoples.
9. Guarantee the respect and right to life, health and bilingual intercultural education, setting policies benefiting indigenous native peoples.
10. Declare as a human right; the right to water, as a vital element and a social good for humanity, which should not be object of profit. Also, promote the use of alternative energies that don’t endanger life on the planet, thus guaranteeing access to all basic services.
11. Resolve in a co-responsible manner the causes of migration amongst countries, assuming policies of free movement of people to guarantee a world without borders where there is no discrimination, marginalization and exclusion.
12. Decolonize the United Nations, and relocate its’ headquarters to a territory which will dignify it and express the just aspirations of the Peoples, Nations and States of the world.
13. Not criminalize the struggles of indigenous peoples, or satanize or accuse us of being terrorists, when the peoples reclaim our rights and proposals of how to save life and humanity.
14. Immediately free our indigenous leaders imprisoned in various parts of the world; mainly Leonard Peltier in the United States.
The struggle does not stop, resistance for resistance sake is over, and our time has come. We proclaim the 12th of October “Day of the beginning of our struggles to save Mother Nature”.
From our families, homes, communities, peoples, whether we are or are not in government in our countries, we decide on our own and direct our destinies, we assume the will and responsibility of Living Well which we inherited from our ancestors, to irradiate from the most single and simple to the most grand and complex, to build in a horizontal fashion and amongst all and wholly, the culture of patience, the culture of dialogue and fundamentally the Culture of Life.
For the dead, heroes and martyrs who fructified our lives, with their utopias and aspirations, let’s strengthen our identity, our organizational processes and our struggles to achieve the construction of unity amongst peoples of the world and return to balance, saving life, humanity and planet earth.
We ratify our support to our brother Evo Morales for the Nobel Peace Prize, for his permanent and unconditional commitment to service for the good of humanity, the peoples, the planet and world peace.