Op-ed by Beto Marubo in Folha de S. Paulo: "Bolsonaro and the Isolated Indians"

{Tribal Link note: Beto Marubo is a member of the Marubo tribe as well as of the Union of the Indigenous Peoples of the Javari Valley (UNIVAJA). He attended Tribal Link’s Project Access Capacity Building Training Workshop for Indigenous Peoples preceding the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in 2018 and is an outspoken defender of the indigenous communities living in voluntary isolation in the Vale do Javari, where his peoples live.}

Folha de S. Paulo

Op-ed section

December 13, 2018

Bolsonaro and the Isolated Indians

Signs given so far threaten to generate conflict

By Beto Marubo

The news that is preceding the inauguration of the President-elect, Jair Bolsonaro, is creating a climate of insecurity regarding the preservation of the Amazonian environment, the indigenous question in general, and in particular the situation of isolated Indians. The President-elect still seems to be in campaign mode.

Now that the election is over, it's time to calm tempers down. The President shouldn’t be provoking juridical insecurity, as is happening at the moment in the Amazon, particularly in the States of Acre and Amazonas, where the largest number of isolated Indians from Brazil and the world is concentrated.

Statements that Bolsonaro will suspend all processes of demarcation of indigenous lands and change the constitutional status of FUNAI - from an organization defending indigenous rights to an institution subordinated to agricultural interests - have created serious instability in a system that is already fragile.

The signs given so far are aimed at generating conflicts like those that marked Brazil's recent past, with many deaths and even a case of genocide.

Ever since the candidate of the PSL proved viable in the electoral campaign, a great wave of deforestation has begun. Official surveys by satellite show that forest fires have reached pre-2008 levels.

On the ground, State officials and those from the Brazilian Army, Ibama, FUNAI, and Federal and State police, have been surprised by the speed of forest cutting, attacks on indigenous peoples, and the physical structures of the State.

One fact shows the rush to create a fait accompli, in order to serve as a basis for land grabbing: in the south of the State of Amazonas, even chestnut trees were knocked over and burned, on [Brazilian] Union lands. Chestnut trees are like the savings accounts of the jungle, producing guaranteed money in each season. Whoever cuts chestnut trees reveals haste and ignorance of the forest that he is destroying.

Brazil currently has 114 records of isolated indigenous peoples, with 28 confirmations of their existence. These ethnicities, all studies point out, live far from contact by choice, usually because of the trauma from previous massacres.

Therefore, in 1987, FUNAI, as a Brazilian state agency, adopted the so-called "no-contact policy:” the establishment of bases of vigilance and protection so that the isolated ones can live in their territories without being forced into the coexistence that they refuse.

But in recent years, the Brazilian government has weakened the protection of these groups. Consequently, the roaming areas of the Indians, even when demarcated, are not effective. Worse still is the situation of those groups in lands that have not yet been demarcated or approved. Some examples:

Last year, the international press reported a possible massacre of a tribe who some call “the people of the arrow,” committed by illegal gold miners. This would have occurred in the Valley of Javari [in the State of Amazonas], my land, as a direct consequence of the reduction of budgets destined for protection, which led to the closure of surveillance bases in the Amazon.

According to Yanomami leader Davi Kopenawa, his land has been experiencing the biggest crisis in recent history. More than 5,000 gold prospectors have invaded it. There may also have been an attack on an isolated group.

Some relief has come since last August, thanks to an effective action of the Army and the official indigenous-allied organization. Also in the State of Rondonia, invasions of the Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau territory, with the support of local politicians, threaten groups without contact with the surrounding society.

That is why last April in New York we asked the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues to assist us in having an official dialogue with our government in support of efforts to protect isolated peoples.

It is urgent that the Brazilian public opinion shows President Bolsonaro that it is necessary to make peace in the countryside and respect those ethnic groups that throughout history have shown the desire to live autonomously. We are a rare country on the planet that even has this opportunity. We can not waste it in the name of the ambition of a few opportunists.


  1. FUNAI, the National Indian Foundation, is the Brazilian government body under the Ministry of Justice that establishes and carries out policies relating to indigenous peoples. FUNAI is responsible for mapping out and protecting lands traditionally inhabited and used by these communities.

  2. PSL is the Social Liberal Party, the party of Jair Bolsonaro, a right-wing conservative political party in Brazil.

  3. IBAMA is the Brazilian Ministry of the Environment's administrative arm. IBAMA implements laws against deforestation where the government ceases to implement and works to keep the forest from loggers, farming, agricultural farm grazing, and anything that would threaten the Amazon.

Reminder: Invitation for views on the preparation, scope and content of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework

Date: 11 December 2018

From: Executive Secretary, Convention on Biological Diversity

To: CBD National Focal Points, CPB Focal Points, ABS Focal Points, indigenous peoples and local communities, relevant organizations.

Subject: Reminder: Invitation for views on the preparation, scope and content of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework

Thematic area: Convention on Biological Diversity

Access to Genetic Resources and Benefit-sharing

Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety 

Ref.: SCBD/OES/DC/RH/KNM/87538



Dear Madam/Sir,

Further to notification 2018-063 (https://www.cbd.int/doc/notifications/2018/ntf-2018-063-post2020-en.pdf) I would like to remind you that the deadline for providing initial views on the aspects of the scope and content of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework (including the resource mobilization component) is 15 December 2018. Initial views should be sent by e-mail to secretariat@cbd.int or fax to +1-514-288-6588.

A preliminary synthesis and analysis of the views submitted was made available for the information of the fourteenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties as document  CBD/COP/14/INF/16 (https://www.cbd.int/doc/c/09c0/0f53/a4cef3e6647ba15a68aec411/cop-14-inf-16-en.pdf). Kindly note that all of the views received to date are accessible from https://www.cbd.int/post2020/submissions.shtml

The text of this notification is also available on the CBD website at: http://www.cbd.int/doc/notifications/2018/ntf-2018-102-post2020-en.pdf

Please accept, Madam/Sir, the assurances of my highest consideration.


Cristiana Paşca Palmer, PhD

Executive Secretary

Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity

United Nations Environment Programme

413 Saint-Jacques Street, Suite 800

Montreal, Quebec, Canada

H2Y 1N9

Tel: +1 514 288 2220

Fax: +1 514 288 6588

E-mail: secretariat@cbd.int

Web: http://www.cbd.int

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UN General Assembly Informal Interactive Hearing with Indigenous Peoples

Call for applications: UN General Assembly Informal Interactive Hearing with Indigenous Peoples

Pursuant to General Assembly Resolution A/RES/71/321 which aims at enhancing the participation of indigenous peoples’ representatives and institutions in meetings of relevant United Nations bodies on issues affecting them, an Interactive hearings will take place at the margins of the 18th session of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (PFII) on 25 April from 3:00-6:00pm.

Applications for funding by the UNVFIP for participation at the interactive hearings are accepted until 18 January 2019.


UN Geneva

Advancing Human Rights: A Status Report on Human Rights in the United States, December 2018

The US Human Rights Network (USHRN) is pleased to release its seventh annual report on the status of human rights in the United States on December 10th in honor of Human Rights Day. On this day 70 years ago, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) the first global expression of the rights to which all human beings are inherently entitled—was adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on December 10, 1948.

This human rights report is a tool to provide advocates on the ground in the United States with a human rights framework to address their issues in the front lines.

TL Note: Chapter on Indigenous Peoples, pp. 8-14

Download the full report - click here

Call for applications for four EMRIP members from four indigenous sociocultural regions

The Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples is looking for new members. Apply by December 18, 2018. More info below.

Le Mécanisme d'experts sur les droits des peuples autochtones recherche de nouveaux membres. Appliquez avant le 18 décembre 2018. Plus d'infos ci-dessous.

El Mecanismo de expertos sobre los derechos de los pueblos indígenas está buscando nuevos miembros. Aplicar antes del 18 de diciembre de 2018. Más información abajo.




Mission statement about Indigenous Peoples in Ecuador

United Nations Special Rapporteur UNSR Victoria Tauli-Corpuz has made a mission statement after visiting Ecuador the last couple of weeks.

“My main concern has been how to recover the path towards plurinationalism. I must conclude that there is no way to make the commitments in the Constitution true without the full recognition and implementation of indigenous peoples' rights in accordance with international human rights law. Protection of rights of nature cannot be achieved without protection of stewards. I am hopeful that definite steps towards this goal can be achieved through the ongoing open dialogue between the Ecuadorian State and indigenous peoples and nationalities.”

Read the full statement here http://unsr.vtaulicorpuz.org/…/stat…/267-end-mission-ecuador

Leerlo en español aquí http://unsr.vtaulicorpuz.org/…/decl…/267-end-mission-ecuador

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Urgent: Ramapough Court Support

This is a VERY important court hearing so please encourage your networks to come out and defend the Ramapough Lenape Nation in their continuing trial with the Polo Club. Court room 312. ***Please check this page for any updates and sign up for last minute text alerts by texting "95halifax" to 84483.

Arrive early and please wear RED (important)!

This will be an important court date related to the Ramapough's ongoing struggle against over $1million in fines for their prayer circle, altar and basic right to pray on their own land.

Source: https://www.facebook.com/events/366338347245091/

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On Giving Tuesday and Beyond: Please Support Tribal Link Foundation


This #GivingTuesday we are raising money for Tribal Link Foundation and your contribution will make an impact, whether you donate $5 or $500. Every little bit helps. And on Giving Tuesday Nov 27, Facebook and PayPal will match a total of $7 Million in donations. Thank you for your support. Here is more information about Tribal Link Foundation: 

Tribal Link Foundation was founded on the principle that the world's indigenous peoples must survive, and that indigenous peoples should speak for themselves, not be spoken for, and in so doing, produce outcomes that are most relevant to their communities. 

Protecting indigenous lands and peoples are key to all of our survival. Today, #GivingTuesday, please consider supporting our work with Brazil’s indigenous leaders and their communities—the stewards of our world's largest and vital rainforest. 


With the rising threat of climate change and the Amazon rainforest in danger of further decimation due to a new Brazilian government hostile to indigenous communities, it’s more important than ever to stop agribusiness, mining, and logging in the world’s largest rainforests.

Recently, Brazilian President-Elect Jair Bolsonaro threatened to sell off major portions of the Amazon rainforest to agribusiness, mining, and hydro-power. He said minorities have to adapt to the majority or disappear, and that “If it were up to me, we would not have any more indigenous areas in the country.”

Of course, any large-scale deforestation of the Amazon, or genocide of its protectors—indigenous peoples—would have catastrophic consequences for the global climate.

Your generous contribution to Tribal Link will go toward supporting projects that strengthen indigenous peoples' leadership and bring them essential skills and tools, so they can more effectively protect their rights, territories, and resources. Concretely in the Amazon, we are partnering with Céline Cousteau's Tribes on the Edge campaign to organize a strategic meeting with the Union of the Indigenous Peoples of the Vale do Javari so they can determine their own plan for socio-economic development. We're also looking to have a specific focus for our annual capacity-building training for Indigenous Peoples, Project Access, on Brazil, in order to strengthen indigenous leaders coming to advocate at the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.

New app aims to connect Indigenous entrepreneurs

A new mobile application #thismymob aimed at connecting and supporting Indigenous entrepreneurs is set to be launched by the University of Technology Sydney in collaboration with the University of Melbourne. Creator Christopher Lawrence told Sky News a remaining 18-month study period will hone the app before young Indigenous people can effectively wield it to establish themselves as coders, programmers and entrepreneurs. The app is expected to officially launch in 2020. Image: YouTube / #thismymob UTS

Source: https://www.skynews.com.au/details/_5854393941001?Blog=7

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Apply for funding for the UNPFII and other meetings!  

Hello friends, just to let you know that the deadline to apply has been further extended until October 31st, so you still have time to apply for funding for the UNPFII and other meetings! // 

Hola amigos, solo para informarles que la fecha límite para postularse se extendió hasta el 31 de octubre, ¡así que aún tiene tiempo para solicitar fondos para el UNPFII y otras reuniones!

Olá amigos, só para informar que o prazo para inscrição foi prorrogado até 31 de outubro, então você ainda tem tempo para solicitar financiamento para o Foro Permanente e outras reuniões!


Call for Nominations – Membership of PFII 2020-2022

Vacancies to be filled from January 2020 to December 2022

The current membership of the Permanent Forum is due to expire at the end of 2019.

Nominations are now requested for the three-year period from January 2020 until December 2022. Current members who have served the maximum of two terms (six years) as Permanent Forum members cannot be nominated for a further term.

Nominations by indigenous people’s organizations

According to established practice, the eight indigenous nominated members are from each of the seven socio-cultural regions determined to give broad representation to the world’s indigenous peoples. These socio-cultural regions are: Africa; the Arctic; Asia; Central and South America and the Caribbean; Eastern Europe, Russian Federation, Central Asia and Transcaucasia; North America; and the Pacific.

The eighth member is nominated from one of the three regions with the largest indigenous population (Africa; Asia; and Central and South America and the Caribbean).  This seat rotates among these three regions every three years, thus adding a second member from that region for each three-year term. (See ECOSOC Decision 2016/205, Election 2).

Therefore, for the membership 2020–2022, there will be two members of the Permanent Forum from Central and South America and the Caribbean.

Download the Call for nominations by DESAEN | SP | FR | RU

How to submit nominations:

To send in nominations for consideration the following documents are required:

  • Nomination letter

  • A recent resume/curriculum vitae of the nominee (maximum 2 printed pages in Word format)

  • A short biography of the nominee (200 words)

  • Information on the consultations amongst indigenous peoples’ organizations

  • Information about the nominating organization(s)

Consultations amongst indigenous organizations are encouraged to commence as soon as possible to ensure that the President of the ECOSOC has suitable candidates for consideration and appointment.  In considering possible candidates the organizations are encouraged to take into account the expertise relevant to the mandate of the Permanent Forum as well as the principles of geographic distribution and gender balance.

The deadline for submission of nominations is 25 January 2019.

Where to submit:

All nominations must be submitted by 25 January 2019 via


indigenous_un@un.org | Subject: Nominations PFII 2020–2022

OR correspondence:

Indigenous Peoples and Development Branch – Secretariat of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues
Division for Inclusive Social Development
Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA)
Room S-2954, 405 East 42nd Street
New York, NY 10017
United States of America

Received nominations will be confirmed by email.

Source: https://www.un.org/development/desa/indigenouspeoples/news/call-for-nominations-2020.html

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San Francisco celebrates Indigenous Peoples Day as a formal holiday for the first time

As the stigma around Columbus Day has changed over the course of some years, people have been quick to highlight the atrocious acts of Christopher Columbus, which includes rape, genocide and torture, leading many to protest the holiday under his name.

“Christopher Columbus was a rapist and a murderer. I feel like in America, they teach you when you were young, ‘he discovered America, this is important history,’ but in reality, it’s all lies,” said Amalia Lamar, an undeclared major at SF State.

Oct. 8, 2018, marked the first formal Indigenous Peoples Day in the city of San Francisco. San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors discontinued the Columbus Day holiday on Jan. 23 of this year in a 10-1 vote favoring the removal of Columbus Day and changing it to Indigenous Peoples Day.

See full story: https://goldengatexpress.org/2018/10/10/san-francisco-celebrates-indigenous-peoples-day-as-a-formal-holiday-for-the-first-time/

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Call for submissions – Thematic report on innovative and transformative models of social inclusion for victims of trafficking

In her last thematic report to the UN Human Rights Council, the UN Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children, Ms Maria Grazia Giammarinaro, paid close attention to the issue of identification, referral and assistance to victims and potential victims of trafficking, especially in mixed migration flows. However, protection does not end with identification and referral to appropriate services; the ultimate goal being that of their social inclusion and reintegration, in countries of destination, transit and of forced or voluntary returns.

Victims of trafficking who have been subjected to sexual, labour or any other form of exploitation often face marginalization, shame and humiliation as a result of their exploitation, which often force them to return to their families and communities even poorer than when they had left in search for a better life.  

This is why, to achieve their meaningful social inclusion and reintegration into society, States, the international community, as well as civil society organizations and the private sector need to envisage long-term solutions, including in terms of economic empowerment and job creation, to allow trafficked persons to effectively rebuild their lives and prevent further re-trafficking.

For this purpose, for her next thematic report to be presented at the UN Human Rights Council in June 2019, Ms Giammarinaro wishes to identify key challenges and innovative and transformative models of social inclusion of victims of trafficking into societies. Mindful that trafficking in persons manifests itself in different forms across different regions of the world, she hopes that submissions provided to her will reflect the specificities of each region, based on the practical challenges faced by victims and other actors engaging with them. The Special Rapporteur is also interested in exploring experiences in which access to remedies, including compensation, has been instrumental to social inclusion.

Areas of interest

The Special Rapporteur particularly welcomes submissions focusing on the following aspects:

  • Information (name and contact details) on relevant stakeholders  engaged in designing and/or implementing innovative models of social inclusion of vulnerable groups more broadly, including but not limited to victims of trafficking (e.g. initiatives implemented for asylum seekers, refugees, victims of abuses in general terms, groups at risk, etc.);

  • Information on innovative and transformative models of social inclusion and reintegration of victims of trafficking in countries of transit and/or of destination;

  • Information on innovative and transformative models of social inclusion and reintegration of victims of trafficking in countries of forced or voluntary returns;

  • Information on innovative and transformative models of social inclusion and reintegration of victims of trafficking in relation to former child soldiers and sexual slaves in post-conflict settings;

  • Information on innovative and transformative models of social inclusion and reintegration of victims of trafficking in cooperation with the private sector, multi-stakeholder initiatives and trade unions as well as traditional and religious leaders and community-based protection systems.

All submissions should be sent to srtrafficking@ohchr.org by 15 November 2018.

Call for Applications for financial support from the UN Voluntary Fund for Indigenous Peoples

The Call for Applications for financial support from the UN Voluntary Fund for Indigenous Peoples to attend the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (2019), the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2019), and Treaty Body sessions between January and March 2019 is now open. Please check the grant cycle for the detailed list of sessions and apply online through the web link below.

Deadline for applying is 12 October 2018.



La convocatoria de solicitudes de apoyo financiero del Fondo Voluntario de las Naciones Unidas para los Pueblos Indígenas para asistir al Foro Permanente para las Cuestiones Indígenas (2019), el Mecanismo de Expertos sobre los Derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas (2019) y sesiones del Órgano de Tratados entre enero y marzo de 2019 ahora abierto. Por favor, consulte el ciclo de subvención para ver la lista detallada de sesiones y solicite en línea a través del enlace a continuación

La fecha límite para el envío de solicitudes es el 12 de octubre del 2018.



L’appel à candidatures pour le soutien financier du Fonds de contributions volontaires des Nations Unies pour les peuples autochtones à l’Instance permanente sur les questions autochtones (2019), le Mécanisme d’experts sur les droits des peuples autochtones (2019) et les sessions des organes conventionnels de janvier à mars 2019 Ouvert. S'il vous plaît vérifier le cycle de subvention pour la liste détaillée des sessions et postuler en ligne via le lien ci-dessous

Les candidatures sont acceptées jusqu’au 12 octobre 2018.


Indigenous Community Radio Grants Project

Application Deadline for Concept Proposals: October 18, 2018

Cultural Survival is pleased to announce its third Call for Proposals for projects in Indigenous community radio. The Indigenous Community Media Grants Project is part of Cultural Survival’s Community Media Program, with a goal to empower Indigenous-owned and Indigenous-led community radio as a platform to inform, entertain, educate, and organize according to their own needs and collective interests as communities.

The aim for the Indigenous Community Media Grants Project is to strengthen the impact and influence of community radio stations at the local and regional levels in their work towards the revitalization of Indigenous cultures, languages, histories, philosophies, rights,  the protection of ancestral territories and natural resources, and the promotion of women’s leadership. Indigenous community radio stations from Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Bolivia, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Nepal, Northern India, Botswana, Namibia and South Africa are eligible to apply to this round of funding. Concept notes will be accepted until October 18, 2018.  

Learn more.        In Nepali.       In Spanish.       In K'iche'.

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Indigenous Fellowship program 2019-2020

A Call for expressions of interest for the Indigenous Fellowship program 2019-2020 has been launched (deadline September 21, 2018).

Since 2009, when the WIPO Indigenous Fellowship Program was launched, members of indigenous and local communities have worked in WIPO’s Traditional Knowledge Division on issues relevant to indigenous peoples.

These include the WIPO Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore (IGC), outreach to indigenous peoples and local communities, WIPO’s cooperation with the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

The fellowship responds to the reciprocal needs for stronger capacity in the rapidly growing domain of indigenous IP law and for strengthened capacity on IP law and policy for indigenous lawyers and policy advisers.

For more info, please see: http://www.wipo.int/tk/en/indigenous/fellowship/


Briefing in NY on OHCHR plans around civic space

Ms. Peggy Hicks, Director of the Thematic Engagement, Special Procedures, and Right to Development Division at OHCHR will brief interested civil society on OHCHR plans for the coming years around civic space, followed by a discussion. The briefing will be held on Friday 17 August 2018 at 3 pm at UNHQ, New York in Conference Room A. One member per organization is cordially invited to attend the briefing. Kindly confirm your participation by email to Ms. Morenike Aroso (arosom@un.org) by 16 August latest.

See also: