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Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact

The Impacts of Land Dispossession on Indigenous Women

This briefing paper highlights the specific conditions of indigenous women, who comprise a major segment of indigenous communities where development projects are being implemented in India, Indonesia, and Cambodia.

In the midst of restiveness against corporate take-over of their lands, territories and resources, the indigenous peoples, particularly indigenous women, are grappling with the consequences of their resistance and finding means to forward the advocacy of the recognition and protection of their rights and welfare.

The oft-repeated phrase “Land is life” never rang truer or louder than today among indigenous women, who have traditionally been bearers and keepers of seeds and that translate to food security of their communities.

Indigenous women are mainly the bearers of traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples in relation to the use, conservation and sustainable management of their natural resources, as well as on certain traditional skills in relation to the livelihoods and traditional occupations of indigenous peoples, such as shifting cultivation/ rotational agriculture, gathering of non-timber forest products among others.

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