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Guarani Paĩ Tavyterã to Participate at the 23rd Session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues

On April 4 and 5, 2024, in the Indigenous community of Ita Guasu, Amambay, Paraguay, the leaders and representatives of various communities of the Guaraní Paĩ Tavyterã People held a preparatory session for their participation at the 23rd Session of the Permanent Forum of the United Nations on Indigenous Issues, which will take place from April 15 to 26 at its headquarters in New York, United States.

This event was promoted by three of the associations that bring together the communities of the Paĩ People: Paĩ Reta Joaju, Paĩ Jopotyra and Paĩ Rekopavẽ, in alliance with the international Indigenous organization Cultural Survival and with the support of the local organization Áry Ancestral Studies Group Ojaseojavo Tembiapokatu, through United Nations Small Projects funds.

In this preparatory session, the participants discussed the topics that will be presented at the international forum, which Rosalba Gómez Arce will attend as representative and spokesperson. She is a young leader of the Paĩ People's women's group. Rosalba Gómez is in her fifth year of law school and has previously participated in other international meetings such as the “International Meeting on Indigenous Justice” in Peru and the “International Seminar on Women, Body and Territory” in El Salvador.


The debate was a great opportunity for the representatives of the three Paĩ Tavyterã associations to analyze the urgent need to strengthen constitutional guarantees for the full exercise of their rights. Although Paraguay has signed international laws and agreements, these are not duly fulfilled (ndojejapói), leaving Indigenous Peoples in a worrying state of lack of protection, especially in relation to their lands, access to health and education, as well as the preservation of their forests, on which their way of life (tekove) and livelihoods depend.

Throughout the meeting, the structural problem land represents was especially delved into, since the Paĩ Tavyterã People have been suffering systematic invasions in their communities that imply a series of violent situations, forced displacement and lack of access to justice, generating a negative impact on people's lives. “Yvy’yrê ikatu orerasy.” Furthermore, the leaders stated that, in order to prevent a genocide from happening, finding solutions to these problems is urgent. 


Voices of Indigenous Youth
This year, the focus theme of the Permanent Forum is ‘Enhancing Indigenous Peoples’ Right to Self-determination in the Context of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: Emphasizing the Voices of Indigenous Youth’. For this reason, the Paĩ Tavyterã People chose youth Rosalba Gómez to carry the voice of their People and, more specifically, to share about how these problems and challenges impact the lives of Indigenous youth.

As a closing act, the leaders of the associations and the women representatives dedicated words of support (omongyre'ỹ haguã) and protection to Rosalba, based on their own knowledge and practices, so that her participation in this international meeting is fruitful and they can continue strengthening their rights as the Ypykuéra  (ancestral people).

Photos: Gentileza Áry Ojeasojavo