CWIS releases new study on considered mechanisms between UN Member States and Fourth World Nations

CWIS releases new study on considered mechanisms between UN Member States and Fourth World Nations

State/Nation Negotiating Mechanism found most acceptable, CWIS Study Finds
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OLYMPIA, WA, April 13 2015 – The Center for World Indigenous Studies today released CWIS #12 Study Analysis: “Realizing Implementation: A Study of Considered Mechanisms Between UN Member States and Fourth World Nations.” The United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues inquiry into the potential use of an optional protocol to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2007) adopted by the General Assembly prompted this five-month study. Of four approaches considered, the study found that a protocol that encourages a state-nation specific negotiating mechanism with a third-party guarantor may be most probably accepted by UN member states and Fourth World nations.

The study assesses the probability of UN member state/Fourth World nation mutual engagement on one of four alternative approaches to implementation the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Studies. The four approaches were distilled from proposals made by the WCIP Outcome Document (2014), UNDRIP (2007), UNPFII (2009-2013), the Expert Group empaneled by the UNPFII to discuss the optional protocol, the eleven governments endorsing the Joint Statement of Constitutional and Customary Indigenous Governments (JSCCIG – 2014), 72 indigenous (US based) indigenous nations Statement submitted to the UNPFII (2013), the Global Indigenous Preparatory Conference (Alta, Norway – 2013), and Regional Preparatory meetings of Indigenous peoples (2011-2013).

The proposals include: 1. Do nothing, 2. Enhance the UN Expert Mechanism (UNEMRIP), 3. UNDRIP optional protocol analysis, and an eleven nations Joint Statement Protocol for state-nation specific mechanisms. Since these proposals essentially embrace variants offered by all of the above sources the CWIS #12 study concentrated on answering the question: Which of the proposed approaches can most probably receive mutually agreed endorsement by both UN member states and Fourth World nations?

Dr. Rudolph Ryser conducted the Study over five months. Amplifying the study’s purpose Dr. Ryser said, “In other words the study proceeds from the premise that to realize UNDRIP implementation in any form the mechanism(s) needed must be agreeable to both states and nations. Without that agreement the probability of implementing provisions and principles in the UNDRIP would remain unlikely–especially when one notes that virtually no state has taken steps to implement UNDRIP since it was adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2007.”

This study examines the potential advantages and disadvantages as well as benefits and harms to states’ and nations’ interests should one of these proposals be considered as viable, and discusses the probability of UN Member States and Fourth World nations adopting one of the proposals. “Since this is the first systematic study focused on this question there will be a need for more studies to better understand how UNDRIP can be implemented and especially what will motivate states and nations to mutually agree to a mechanism,” Ryser explained.

The study is posted on the CWIS Webpage ( and released to CWIS Associate Scholars, Indigenous governments, the Thursday Group (US-based discussion group of NCAI, Indian Law Resource Center and Native American Rights Fund), UN Missions, International multi-lateral organizations, Endorsing governments of the 2014 Joint Statement to the UNPFII, the UNPFII, Expert Mechanism on the rights of indigenous peoples, Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, and the Expert Group of five commenting on the UNPFII optional protocol analysis.

The Center for World Indigenous Studies (CWIS) is an independent research, education and policy analysis institution established in 1979. Dr. Ryser is the CWIS Board of Directors Chair.

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Rudolph Ryser
Telephone: 360-450-5183

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