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In Kenya and Tanzania, a number of cases are pending in court for Indigenous Maasai pastoralist communities pressing charges the illegal appropriation of their land. Pastoralists are particularly vulnerable to land appropriation, as their semi-nomadic lifestyle is viewed by discriminatory legislation and policies as lacking permanent ties to land that demonstrate ownership. Rather, the Maasai’s way of life has been delegitimized in favor of permanent agricultural based economies.

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The right to health is the most basic of human rights, argues Indigenous Maasai scholar Ben Koissaba, of Kenya, in conclusion to his participation at the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples that took place September 2014 in New York.  “[It’s] fulfillment is both a precondition to, and a by-product of, the enjoyment of all other rights,” he explains.  In a recent publication, Koissaba evaluated progress towards the right to health for Indigenous Peoples of Africa. Around the world, Indigenous Peoples suffer from greater illness and poorer quality of care than other groups.

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Urge Harvard to Be a Responsible Investor

The Iberá wetlands system in Argentina is one of the world’s largest freshwater bodies, but it is under threat. Vast monocrop pine and eucalyptus plantations have virtually eliminated biodiversity in more than half of the wetlands, devastating freshwater levels and dramatically affecting the livelihoods of the Guaraní Indigenous People who have lived in relationship with the lands for generations and depend on these ecosystems. Who's responsible? None other than Harvard University.

Latest CSQ Articles

A Too Common Occurrence: Maasai Land Theft by Safari Company in Northern Tanzania

The expansive landscapes and large wildlife populations of Ngorongoro District in Northern Tanzania, which borders Serengeti National Park, make it a leading area for Tanzania's tourism industry. But the scenic beauty and pastoral ideal belie a much more complex and conflict ridden reality. For the land and the Maasai who have traditionally inhabited it, the past hundred years have been characterized by marginalization and loss.

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Mirna Cunningham: Securing Mechanisms for Compliance

September 22, 2014 marked an important day for Indigenous communities everywhere. It was the first day of a two-day high level meeting of the General Assembly at the United Nations in New York City, doubling as the first World Conference on Indigenous Peoples.

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