Mexico

Overview

Mexico has the largest indigenous population in the Americas and the largest number of native languages spoken in its territory: 68 languages and 364 registered dialects. According to official statistics, principally from the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), 6.5% of the national population speaks an indigenous language while 10.6% of the population indicated that they live in an indigenous household. 21.5% (27.5 million) of Mexico’s population describes themselves as indigenous people.

Mexico signed ILO Convention 169 in 1990, and in 1992 Mexico was recognized as a pluricultural nation through the amending of Article VI of the Constitution. In 2001, as a result of the mobilisation of indigenous peoples demanding that the “San Andres Accord” –negotiated in 1996 between the Government and the Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN) be codified into law, Articles 1, 2, 4, 18, and 115 of the Mexican Constitution were reformed. Starting in 2003, the EZLN and the Indigenous National Congress started to put the Accords into practice throughout their territories, by creating autonomous indigenous governments in Chiapas, Michoacán, and Oaxaca.

Mexico voted for the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) and is a signatory to ILO Convention 169.

International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs, The Indigenous World 2019

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