Indigenous Peoples

To mark the UN International Year of the World's Indigenous People, the First International Conference on the Cultural and Intellectual Property Rights of Indigenous Peoples was held in Whakatane, New Zealand from 12 to 18 June 1993. The conference was entitled "Protection of the Ancestors: Te Pupuri i Nga Taonga Tuku Iho a Nga Tipuna". The conference program included discussion of biodiversity and biotechnology, among other topics.

The Third Interamerican Indigenous Conference on Environment and Economic Development took place in Vancouver, Canada from 15 to 19 September 1993. Delegates from all over the Americas met in Vancouver to discuss items that were omitted during the Earth Summit and other important topics for indigenous peoples of the Americas. This conference was a follow up of the First Congress held in Panama in 1989 and the Second in Bolivia in 1991. Taking into account that the proposals adopted at UNCED did not represent the point of view of indigenous peoples, one of the principal objectives of the conference was to prepare a manifesto to present to the United Nations.

The Continental Commission of Indigenous Nations (CONIC) held the II Continental Encounter of Indigenous Nations, Pueblos, and Organizations on 8-13 October 1993 in Mexico. Themes of the conference were: spirituality and tradition; self-determination, legislation, and indigenous rights; land rights, development, and the environment; women, family, and community; education, culture, and youth; and organization and coordination. The purpose of the conference was to promote indigenous unity and create systems of communication and coordination on a continental level, and to propose viable alternatives and solutions to issues facing indigenous peoples based upon self-determination.

The Alaska Indigenous Community Development and Research, sponsored by the Traditional Dena'ina Tribe, presented a conference on International Health & Alternative Medicine in October 1993 in Anchorage, Alaska. The purpose of this conference was to share health and vaccination information, to promote networking, and to help bring the disease and infant mortality rate down through informed consent and knowledge. The conference included local, national, internationally known doctors, scientists, researchers, and traditional healers.

The Second International NGO and Indigenous Peoples and Nations Conference on Boreal Forests was held from August 23 to 28, 1994, in Edmonton, Canada. The event was organized by the Taiga Rescue Network.