Uploaded on Feb 27, 2008
To Watch Video Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=32JlpB... More videos: www.sommerfilms.org
An eye-opening and heartfelt documentary made by filmmaker and human rights advocate Rebecca Sommer, about the pressing issues faced by indigenous peoples around the world, and the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.
What can you do when your land has been taken away from you, your culture destroyed and your language is dying? How does it feel when history books describe your ancestors as savages and the people who killed and displaced them are portrayed as heroes? Where can you go with your grievances, when the courts will not take your cases and the police treat you as an enemy? When disaster strikes and atrocities are committed, the world looks to the United Nations to intervene, react and to help, but for the longest time, the doors of the UN were closed to indigenous peoples, and for decades they were left to fend for themselves.
The awareness raising film "Indigenous Peoples and the United Nations Vol.1" brings to life a truly historic moment for indigenous peoples from around the world. It is a story of hope. Now, with their foot in the door, the indigenous peoples of the world want to make a difference and influence the actions of the United Nations. Indigenous peoples face significant impediments to exerting control over their futures.
While the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues has the opportunity to serve as an important catalyst, history will determine whether it ensures that the voices of the indigenous peoples are heard, and if it achieves real change and protections for indigenous peoples.
Rebecca Sommer, filmmaker of "Indigenous Peoples and the United Nations, Vol.1."
"For far too long, the hopes and aspirations of indigenous peoples have been ignored. Their lands have been taken, cultures denigrated or directly attacked, languages and customs suppressed, wisdom and traditional knowledge overlooked, and sustainable ways of developing natural resources dismissed. Some have even faced the threat of extinction. Indigenous peoples continue to suffer from prejudice and ill will. In many cases they are trapped in the middle of conflict, conscripted into armed forces, faced with summary executions and relocated from their lands. They are subject to extreme poverty, disease, environmental destruction and sometimes permanent displacement."
Kofi Annan, former Secretary-General of the United Nations
in the film "Indigenous Peoples and the United Nations, Vol.1."