MIFEE Project Violates Right to Food

9 Aug 2011
Perkumpulan Sawit, FPP and anothers

Letter to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, requesting urgent assistance to address the imminent threat to the Right to Food of the indigenous peoples in Merauke, Papua Province, Indonesia. The letter was submitted by 22 organisations, and makes the following request:

In light of the above and in particular the gravity of the matter, the existing harms, and the likelihood of imminent irreparable harms, the Submitting Organizations respectfully request that your office:

(i) Send an Urgent Appeal to the Government of Indonesia expressing your concern about the violations of rights to food, among others, that might arise from the continued implementation of the MIFEE project;

(ii) Call for a moratorium on additional concessions and further implementation of the MIFEE project until the proper land security for indigenous peoples in Merauke can take place through the reform of necessary national laws and the demarcation and titling of their lands in accordance with their customs, values and norms;

(iii) Request permission from the Government of Indonesia to make an inloco visit to Merauke where the indigenous communities and organizations with whom the Submitting Organizations work have already expressed their interest in welcoming you and facilitating your visit;

(iv) Consider the value in engaging the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in Merauke and recommend that the Government of Indonesia accept the FAO’s support in reviewing the MIFEE project and its associated goals and concessions, and engaging in the development of a national strategy in “full compliance with the principles of
accountability, transparency, [and] people’s participation” – especially the indigenous peoples concerned, and based on “human rights principles”.

(v) As appropriate, coordinate your office’s assistance on this matter with the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (copied below) given that the MIFEE project shall cause severe adverse impacts not just to the indigenous peoples’ right to food, but also to many other rights including their right to health, lands and resources, and culture, all of which are
inextricably intertwined with and dependent on security of tenure over their traditional lands, territories and resources; and

(vi) Urge the Committee on Economic Social and Cultural Rights to not only remind the Government of Indonesia that since their ratification of the Convention on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in 2006, they are now overdue to submit their initial report which should include a description of the measures the Government has taken to to respect, protect, and fulfill the right to food in the context of MIFEE in Merauke; and

(viii) Take any other measure that your office deems appropriate given the facts and the competencies bestowed on the rapporteurship by the UN Human Rights Council.

Tagged: West Papua