Human Rights Council 12th session
Report of the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
Statement by Norway
28 September 2009
I would first like to congratulate the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (EMRIP) on its successful completion of the second session. EMRIP has a crucial role to play in promoting indigenous peoples rights, and it is an important thematic advisory body.
Norway welcomes the efforts by EMRIP to actively encourage other UN mandates to contribute to the study on education (A/HRC/EMRIP/2009/2). The study builds upon existing recommendations and reports adopted by other UN mandates and bodies, including the Permanent Forum, the Special-Rapporteur on the situation of human rights and fundamental freedoms of indigenous peoples, the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the Committee on the Rights of the Child, and the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. The completion of the study is, in our view, the first thematic milestone achieved by EMRIP.
Norway values the recommendation made by EMRIP that Member States should pay particular attention to the right to education of indigenous peoples in the universal periodic review process of the Human Rights Council, as well as under its special procedures.
Norway welcomes the six recommendations put forward to the Council (A/HRC/12/32).
In particular, we support the proposal made by EMRIP that the Human Rights Council authorizes EMRIP to prepare a study on indigenous peoples’ right to participate in decision-making, and to conclude it by 2012. Participation in decision-making processes is of fundamental importance and precondition for the realization of a vast number of indigenous peoples rights. In our own national experience, the establishment of Samediggi, the Sami Parliament of Norway, has significantly improved the implementation of the rights of the indiginous peoples.
Norway agrees with EMRIP that national human rights institutions have a crucial role to play in promoting the rights of indigenous peoples. Norway encourages States to ensure that they have strong national human rights institutions established according to the Paris Principles, that can effectively promote and protect the rights of Indigenous Peoples, and stress the importance to encourage national institutions to develop and strengthen their activities to promote and protect the rights of Indigineous Peoples.