MINELRES: MRG eBulletin: May 2008

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Sun Jun 8 17:48:03 2008


Original sender: MRG International <noreply@mrgmail.org>


Welcome to the Minority Rights Group International (MRG) email bulletin.
Simply click on the links below in order to access the full news story
or publication on MRG's website, or alternatively visit our site at
http://www.minorityrights.org


News features 
UN Forum on Minority Issues
29 May 2008

The inaugural session of the UN Forum on Minority Issues will take place
on 4 and 5 September 2008 in Geneva. The thematic focus will be
minorities and access to education and the Independent Expert on
Minority Issues is calling for all interested stakeholders to submit
information relevant to this thematic subject in advance of the Forum. 

For more information visit
http://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/hrcouncil/minority/forum.htm 


Minorities in the new Nepal
29 May 2008

After several years of bloody conflict the South Asian state of Nepal is
set to become a republic and end 240 years of royal rule. The country
has recently elected constituents to an assembly that is meeting in
Kathmandu to draft a new constitution for the Himalayan state. Deependra
Jha, a human rights activist from the ethnic Madhesi community,
discusses some of the main challenges facing minorities in this current
transition phase. 

http://www.minorityrights.org/?lid=6584


Minorities must not be left out of Burma relief efforts
8 May 2008

As a massive international relief effort gets underway to help hundreds
of thousands of Burmese affected by the recent cyclone, Minority Rights
Group international calls on the UN and international aid agencies to
make sure that ethnic minorities are not left out of the process. 

http://www.minorityrights.org/?lid=6496


Minority rights a concern as Israel marks its 60th anniversary
8 May 2008

As 60th anniversary celebrations of the founding of the state of Israel
takes place this week the country’s minority rights record remains a
major concern. 

http://www.minorityrights.org/?lid=6494


MRG in the news - a selection of the major stories featuring MRG's views 

Climate change plea from tribe of herders who face extinction
Olav Mathias-Eira is a reindeer-herder. So was his father. And his
father's father. He is a member of the Sami community, one of the
largest indigenous groups remaining in Europe, and his family have been
herding reindeer in the same stretch of the Norwegian Arctic since the
1400s.

http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change-plea-from-tribe-of-
herders-who-face-extinction-825424.html

Keep up the pressure
The world is finally waking up to the human rights situation in Sri
Lanka - and holding its government responsible.. 


Farah Mihlar

http://commentisfree.guardian.co..uk/farah_mihlar/2008/05/keep_up_the_pressure.h
tml


Coming up 

In July 2008 MRG will be launching a new campaign on the impact of
climate change on minority and indigenous communities and continues with
its ‘Trouble in Paradise’ campaign pressing for a better deal for
minorities and indigenous peoples in tourism development. MRG will also
soon be launching its 2007 Annual Review and a guide entitled
‘Protecting the rights of minorities in Africa: A guide for human rights
activists and civil society organizations’. Check our website for
details of all these exciting new developments. 

What's new? 
MRG blog - Minorities in focus
Ishbel Matheson hears how the rich resources of Lake Victoria are
dwindling, while the Nyala fishing community fails to benefit.

Matilde Ceravolo, MRG’s Fundraiser, reflects on the similarities and
differences of two cities caught up in ethnic feuding.

MRG's International Human Rights Officer for Africa, Paile Chabane,
continues with her work in Swaziland facilitating the setting up of an
African Minorities Forum.

Read about their experiences at http://minorityrights.wordpress.com


MRG briefing papers

Why a minority rights approach to conflict? The case of Southern Sudan
This briefing is aimed at decision-makers working on conflict
management, peace-building, development and human rights in countries
affected by conflict - whether they be officials of the government in
question, humanitarian actors working for donor governments,
intergovernmental organizations, local NGOs or international NGOs (the
imperfect shorthand of 'humanitarian actors' will be used to cover all
of these categories). The aim is to illustrate how the minority rights
approach can be useful to the work of humanitarian actors in any
conflict situation - whether it be aid distribution in a refugee camp, a
reformed police force, or a new national education curriculum. For this
purpose, the briefing examines the specific case of Southern Sudan. 

To download a copy of the briefing go to
http://www.minorityrights.org/?lid=6253 


Climate Change and Minorities

A study of several recent environmental disasters across the world shows
that it is minority and indigenous groups that have been worst affected
by changing weather patterns but in most cases when a disaster strikes
help and relief reach them last, Minority Rights Group International
says in their Minorities and Climate Change briefing.

To download a copy of the briefing go to
http://www.minorityrights.org/?lid=6268

MRG's World Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples 
MRG recently launched the first online database of the world's
minorities and indigenous peoples. The World Directory of Minorities and
Indigenous Peoples covers 220 of the world's countries and dependent
territories, and features profiles of about 700 minorities/indigenous
peoples. It is a unique resource for policy-makers, governments,
journalists, academics and all those with an interest in the growing
field of minority rights.

http://www.minorityrights.org/directory

For the latest developments visit the The World Directory of Minorities
and Indigenous Peoples most recently updated country pages on Equatorial
Guinea, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Suriname and Zimbabwe.

**

Minority Rights Group International (MRG) is a non-governmental
organization working to secure the rights of ethnic, religious and
linguistic minorities and indigenous peoples worldwide, and to promote
cooperation and understanding between communities.

MRG is a registered charity no. 282305, and has consultative status with
the United Nations Economic and Social Council and observer status with
the African Commission for Human and Peoples' Rights.

Minority Rights Group International
54 Commercial Street, London, E1 6LT, UK
Tel: 020 7422 4200
Fax: 020 7422 4201
Email: minority.rights@mrgmail.org
Website: http://www.minorityrights.org


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