Conservation and indigenous peoples’ rights: report

29 July 2016
Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples
To the GA at its 71st session



The present report was submitted to the General Assembly by the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples pursuant to her mandate under Council resolutions 15/14 and 24/9.


In this report, the Special Rapporteur provides a thematic analysis of conservation measures and their impact on indigenous peoples’ rights.

Protected areas have the potential of safeguarding the biodiversity for the benefit of all humanity; however, these have also been associated with human rights violations against indigenous peoples in many parts of the world. The complex violations that have been faced by indigenous peoples in the wake of evermore expanding protected areas have been raised by respective special rapporteurs during numerous country visits and communications to governments.

The report charts legal developments and commitments and measures taken made to advance a human rights-based paradigm in conservation, while also identifying key remaining challenges. The report concludes with recommendations on how conservation, in policy and practice, can be developed in a manner which respects indigenous peoples’ rights and enhances sustainable conservation.