Oct 05, 2006

Faces of Self-Determination: Symposium in Pictures

UNPO, KKF and HIHR hosted a Symposium in The Hague between 29 Sept. – 01 Oct. 2006. Photographer Florine Visser made sure the visual richness of the event was captured.

The Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) joined forces this weekend with the Khmers Kampuchea–Krom Federation (KKF) and the Hawai’i Institute for Human Rights (HIHR), to host a Symposium on “The Right to Self-Determination in International Law”  (29 September – 01 October 2006, The Hague, the Netherlands).

The topic of Self-Determination is no stranger to fora of international debate, but this Symposium was unique in its efforts to encourage contributions from a broad range of participants. In addition to legal experts and academics, the Symposium enjoyed the active participation of Rodolfo Stavenhagen, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights and fundamental freedoms of indigenous peoples. Practitioners of leading models of Self-Determination were also on hand to share their experiences, including; Mr. Johan Mikkel Sara, Vice-President of the Norwegian Sámi Parliament; Mr. Aqqaluk Lynge, President of the Inuit Circumpolar Council (Greenland); and Mr. Jake Swamp, Chief of the Mohawk Nation.

Further diversity and experience was added by the active participation of a large delegation from the indigenous Khmer Krom of the Mekong Delta. The Khmer Krom are at present under Vietnamese rule, and engaged in a struggle to preserve their very identity against concerted efforts of forcible assimilation and cultural persecution, focusing in particular on Khmer Krom Buddhist temples and Monks. Their participation and presence underlined the true urgency of the questions before the Symposium.

The diversity of the group of participants was evident during every session of the Symposium, not only in terms of content, but also through a visual richness seldom seen during debates of this nature. Thankfully, Freelance Photographer Florine Visser was at hand to capture every moment.

Organisers wish to thank Ms. Visser for her kind collaboration.

Click here for: Symposium Programme & Declaration