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Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact

Thailand’s green goals threaten Indigenous forest dwellers

Globally, indigenous and local communities own more than half of all land under customary rights, but only have secure legal rights to about 10%, according to AIPP’s partner Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI), a Washington D.C.-based advocacy group. About 2 billion indigenous and rural people live in conservation areas worldwide. As governments prioritized conservation to cut carbon emissions, more than 250,000 people were evicted from protected areas in 15 countries from 1990 to 2014, RRI estimated. Yet the financial cost of resettling evicted indigenous people far exceeds the cost of recognizing their tenure rights, a move that comes with substantial green benefits, RRI said in a report last year.

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