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The right to food guidelines and indigenous peoples:an operational guide









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    Sustainable Development Goal 16 & Indigenous Peoples’ Collective Rights to Land, Territories & Resources 2021
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    Land rights are interlinked with peace and development, being the trigger for conflict and disputes involving Indigenous Peoples’ rights in almost every region in the world (United Nations Indigenous Peoples Major Group for Sustainable Development, 2019). Access to land is closely related to the right to adequate food, as recognized under article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and article 11 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Natural resources are the main direct source of food for the majority of Indigenous Peoples. While land and water are central to food production, forest resources provide a basis for subsistence harvesting as well as for income-generating activities, e.g. through the collection and use of non-wood forest products. Thus Indigenous Peoples’ right to food often depends closely on their access to and control over their lands and other natural resources in their territories. For many traditional communities, especially those living in remote regions, access to hunting, fishing and gathering grounds for their subsistence livelihoods is essential for ensuring their adequate nutrition, as they may have no physical or economic access to marketed food (Knuth, 2009). There is therefore a key relationship between realising the right to food and improving access to natural resources which is also recognised by the Voluntary Guidelines to support the progressive realization of the right to adequate food in the context of national food security (Right to Food Guidelines) adopted by FAO Council in 2004. This paper has highlights the intrinsic relationship that exists between the collective of Indigenous Peoples to land, territories and resources, and SDG 16 on peace justice and strong institutions. In the light of the goals set out in the 2030 Agenda, the fulfillment of the entire SDGs for Indigenous Peoples depends on the legal recognition and legal protection of their collective rights as an essential condition for the implementation of the right to self-determination as enshrined in UNDRIP and the other international treaties. The legal protection of collective rights of Indigenous Peoples implies not only respecting their collective right to natural resources which is at the core of FAO’s mandate, but also their right to exercise their justice and governance systems. Respect for their institutions, legal regimes, and customary law within the framework of legal pluralism is an intrinsic part of SDG16, and the achievement of peace depends precisely on this.
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    Indigenous Food Systems, Agroecology and the Voluntary Guidelines on Tenure
    A Meeting between Indigenous Peoples and FAO. 2-3 February 2015 - FAO, Rome Headquarters
    2015
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    On the 2-3 February 2015, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations organized a technical meeting betwen indigenous peoples' respresentatives and FAO staff. The meeting was attended by more than twenty indigenous peoples from the seven socio-cultural regions identified by the United Nations Permanent Forum on indigenous issues (UNPFII), including members of UNPFII, political leaders, technical experts, indigenous food producers and traditional knowledge-holders. In addition, th e International Fund for Agricultural Development, the International Land Coalition (ILC), civil society and academia also attended the discussions. This report includes the work plan based on the main suggestions made for how FAO and indigenous peoples can collaborate in the short, medium and long term. The report identifies concrete steps that can be followed in relation to the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-scale Fisheries in the Context of Food Security and Poverty Eradi cation, known as the SSF Guidelines, indigenous food systems and fishers among others.

    Read the reports and other materials from other Meetings on Agroecology for Food Security and Nutrition :

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    Report of Capacity development Workshop on the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries in the Context of Food Security and Poverty Eradication for Indigenous Peoples of Central America 2019
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    For centuries, fishing has been an activity of great importance for indigenous peoples. They inhabit and relate to water ecosystems, which conserve their cultural heritage, food sovereignty (the right to access healthy and culturally appropriate food) and in many cases are a main source of income. In Central America the situation is not different: today indigenous peoples live in more than 75% of the marine-coastal zones of the Caribbean Sea and extensive areas adjacent to continental waters and the Pacific Ocean, and have in fishing their main incomes. Precisely these areas present the highest indicators of poverty and malnutrition in the region. Taking this context into account, FAO and FILAC joined forces to promote the implementation of the voluntary guidelines for the sustainability of small-scale fisheries (DV-PPE) in the context of food security and the eradication of poverty. They organized the international course "Voluntary Guidelines for the Sustainability of Small Scale Fisheries in the Context of Food Security and the Eradication of Poverty for Indigenous Peoples of Central America". During the course, government representatives, indigenous leaders and indigenous fishermen from six countries (Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama and Nicaragua) gathered to learn, share, advocate, dialogue and build a roadmap to implement in their countries.

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