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IWGIA Statement to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Human Rights Situation in Africa

Publisher: IWGIA
Number of pages: 3
Publication language: English
Region publication is about: Africa
Release year: 2022
Release Month | Day: October

Tags: Human rights

IWGIA prepared the following statement and submitted it to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights at its 73rd session in October 2022.

Indigenous Peoples in Africa are increasingly losing their ancestral lands through land grabbing and forced evictions, which threaten their future existence. The land grabbing and evictions are done in violent ways and in blatant discard for international law, including the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.

The human rights violations happening in relation with the land grabbing and forced evictions include:
• illegal confiscation of land and property,
• burning and destruction of homes,
• illegal seizing of livestock and destruction of food,
• extortion of money from victims,
• harassment of community members and leaders,
• arbitrary arrests, torture, and killings.

All of this leads to massive trauma and fear within the affected communities, to food insecurity and to impoverishment.

Indigenous Peoples’ human rights defenders who try to protest these violations are often criminalized, harassed, and attacked. This is part of a worrying global trend of increased persecution of human rights defenders, where it was in 2021 reported by Frontline Defenders and HRD Memorial that at least 358 human rights defenders were killed, out of which nearly 60% were land and Indigenous rights defenders.

The land grabbing and forced evictions are driven by powerful forces, including extractive industries, large scale agribusiness enterprises, big infrastructure projects and tourism developments.


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IWGIA - International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs - is a global human rights organisation dedicated to promoting and defending Indigenous Peoples’ rights. Read more.

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IWGIA's global report, the Indigenous World, provides an update of the current situation for Indigenous Peoples worldwide. Read The Indigenous World.

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