9th Session of the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
11- 15 July 2016 Geneva
Statement By: Sanjeeb Drong, 14 July 2016
Mr, Chairperson, good afternoon and thank you.
I am pleased to greet you on behalf of my organization Indigenous Peoples Development Services, and my people the Garos in Bangladesh.
We have been working to protect and promote the human rights and fundamental freedoms of indigenous human rights defenders.
The reality is that the democratic space for indigenous human rights defenders is shrinking is in many countries. Space for democratic and peaceful movement has already been reduced in my country too.
Many human rights defenders, in every region of the world, have been subject to violations of human rights. The risk taking level of indigenous human rights defenders is very high. They face direct physical attack, even killings and they see no real hope for justice. Culture of impunity has made indigenous human rights defenders more vulnerable.
Indigenous human rights defenders are victims of target of executions, torture, beatings, arbitrary arrest and detention, death threats, harassment and defamation, as well as restrictions on their freedoms of movement, expression, association and assembly. Defenders have been the victims of false accusations and unfair trial and conviction.
Lack of real democracy, good governance, transparency and accountability has made human rights defender’s life risky and most vulnerable.
The UN agencies, international community, civil society and States need to work together towards the implementation of the Human Rights Defender’s Declaration at country level for the protection of indigenous human rights defenders, to investigate violations against them, and to create accountability for those violations.
Indigenous human rights defenders seek the promotion and protection of civil and political rights as well as the promotion, protection and realization of economic, social and cultural rights.
In conclusion, I recommend that EMRIP to take steps to study on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders at country level and to submit this proposal to the Human Rights Council for consideration.
July 14, 2016
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