The shrinking democratic space in Asia has made it increasingly difficult for land and indigenous rights defenders to push for policy changes that guarantee indigenous peoples’ right to land, territories, and natural resources.
Asia has the largest number of Indigenous Peoples – about 411 million live in the region as per Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact (AIPP) estimate. The recognition of indigenous peoples’ land rights is clearly reflected in Article 26 of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), which states “Indigenous Peoples have the right to the lands, territories, and resources which they have traditionally owned, occupied or otherwise used or acquired.” However, Indigenous Peoples continue to suffer from development aggression, the imposition of national parks and conservation areas, and criminalization caused by misinterpretation of Indigenous Peoples’ traditional land use and livelihoods, among others.
Recognition, protection, and fulfillment of indigenous peoples' right to land are critical, not only for their identity but also for their survival and wellbeing. In this regard, governments across Asia need to respect the economic, social, cultural, and spiritual values and importance that indigenous peoples attach to their lands, territories, and resources.
CBI 5 initiative brings together ILC members and partner organizations to collaborate and work hand in hand to advancing the recognition of Indigenous Peoples’ land rights in Asia region. This initiative is also seen as one of the efforts of ILC and AIPP members, partners and networks to also support the Global Call to Action on Indigenous and Community Land Rights or also known as the #LandRightsNow campaign, which all ILC Asia members are part of.
Under its main goal Indigenous Peoples’ rights to lands, territories and resources are recognised and governed by the communities in a sustainable manner. This particular initiative aims for the following outcomes:
- Strengthened in-country and inter-country learning, collaboration and solidarity and to sustain Indigenous Peoples’ land rights campaign and advocacy in various levels and as a regional platform; and
- Increased awareness of and support to Indigenous Peoples rights to LTR by the wider civil society organisations and relevant institutions for policy change and effective implementation
Where we work
Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Nepal, the Philippines, and Thailand
ILC's Indigeous Peoples Initiative is coordinated by our member the Asia Indigenous Peoples' Pact (AIPP), based in Thailand. Other members of ILC involved in the initiative include:
- Society for Development of Drought Prone Area (SDDPA), India
- Consortium for Land Research and Policy Dialogue (COLARP), Nepal
- Bhartiya Jan Sewa Ashram (BJSA), India
- Philippine Association for Intercultural Development (PAFID), Philippines
- NGO Forum, Cambodia
- Prayatna Samiti, India
- Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA), Philippines
- Foundation for Ecological Security (FES), India
- Kapaeeng Foundation, BangladesCordillera Peoples Alliance, Philippines
- PACOS TRUST, Malaysia
- Jaringan Kerja Pemetaan Partisipatif (JKPP), Indonesia
- PAKISAMA, Philippines
AIPP member organisations:
- Inter-Mountain Peoples Education and Culture in Thailand (IMPECT)
- Hmong Association for Development in Thailand (MDT), Thailand
- Cambodia Indigenous Peoples Organization (CIPO)
- Nepal Federation of Indigenous Nationalities (NEFIN)
- Center for Sustainable Development in Mountainous Areas (CSDM), Vietnam
- Global Association for People and the Environment (GAPE), Laos
- Promotion of Indigenous and Nature Together (POINT), Myanmar
- Chin Human Rights Organisation (CHRO), Myanmar
- Adivasi Women’s Network (AWN), India
- Jaringan Orang Asal Se-Malaysia (JOAS), Malaysia
- Papora Indigenous Development Association (PIDA), Taiwan
 Shimreichon Luithui-Erni, 2019, ‘Status of Indigenous Peoples’ Lands, Territories and Resources (LTR) in Asia’ AIPP Publications.