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Victory in hard-fought struggle in defense of the human rights of peasants

UN resolution hints at a new international instrument to  promote and protect  the rights of peasants and other people working in rural areas

The United Nations Human Rights Council adopted a landmark resolution hinting at a new instrument for the rights of the world’s estimated 1.2 billion peasants and other people working in rural areas. The resolution (A/HRC/21/L23) is monumental in light of peasants’ key role for food production—and also in the wake of contemporary challenges such as growing conflicts over land, water, and also food prices and climate crises.

The UN Human Rights Council resolution was approved on September 27, after 23 Member States voted in favour, 15 abstained and nine voted against the text[1].

The resolution is based on the report of the Advisory Committee of the UN Human Rights Council entitled “Final study of the Human Rights Council Advisory Committee on the advancement of the rights of peasants and other people working in rural areas” (A/HRC/19/75). This study was adopted by this body on the right to food in the 19th session of UN Human Rights Council (March 2012). In this session, the resolution on the right to food was adopted by consensus.

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Human Rights Council: Towards a better protection of the rights of farmers and peasants


Press release - La Via Campesina

(Geneva, 28 September 2012) It is with great satisfaction that the international peasant's movement La Via Campesina and its member organization in Switzerland the peasant union Uniterre can announce that the United Nations have decided to better protect the rights of farmers and peasants around the world. Thursday, September 27, 2012, the Human Rights Council adopted a resolution "Promoting the human rights of peasants and others people living in rural areas."

Through this resolution, the Council recognizes the absolute need for a new international legal instrument that takes the form of a United Nations declaration. It aims to bring together in a single text the specific rights of peasant farmers, women and men, and to integrate new rights such as rights to land, seeds, means of production or information in rural areas.

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Palestine : Free Palestinian farmers and agricultural workers targeted for imprisonment


August 5, 2012

As they organize to defend their land and Palestinian farming against the onslaught of settlements and siege, Palestinian agricultural workers and organizers have been subject to an intensified arrest campaign in the occupied West Bank of Palestine. 
A number of staff of the Union of agricultural WorK Committes (UAWC), a Palestinian grassroots organization that organizes Palestinian farmers to defend their land and develop their products, have been targeted in recent days for arrest by Israeli occupation forces.

On July 31, Dr. Moayad Ahmad Bisharat, the coordinator of UAWC’s Jericho office was abducted at dawn from his home. The UAWC office in Jericho was then ransacked by Israeli forces, who confiscated the computers, laptops, and files of the organization.

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International Orgs Warn:The State of Honduras Must Guarantee Judicial Independence, Impartiality

We, the international organizations signing below, would like to express our severe indignation regarding the three most recent murders of peasants in the context of the agrarian conflict in Bajo Aguán.

The small-scale food producer Gregorio Chávez Arando, 69 years old, active member of the Catholic Church, disappeared from his parcel on July 2. On July 6, his body was found buried in the Paso Aguán estate, which is under the control of the businessman and palm oil producer Miguel Facussé.

On July 7, Jacobo Erazo López, member of MUCA (Movimiento Unificado Campesino de Aguán) and ex-director of the Tranvía business, of the La Confianza settlement, was captured and shot to death by unknown persons as he was going to work in the Quebrada de Arena community. José Luis Dubón Diaz, also a member of MUCA, was murdered in la Ceibita close to the Lempira settlement on Sunday, July 8.

Including these most recent murders, 51 people related to or affiliated with the peasant organizations, and a journalist and his partner, have been murdered since 2009 within the context of the agrarian conflict afflicting this region. Furthermore, a peasant man has been missing since May 15, 2011.

During recent years, international organizations have been constantly monitoring the situation in Bajo Aguán, inter alia, through an international fact finding mission on human rights in Bajo Aguán, conducted in March 2011and the international public hearing on the human rights situation in Bajo Aguán, held on May 28 in Tocoá, Colón.2

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