Pope Francis declared that Native Americans deserve the right to give prior consent to any economic activity that affects their ancestral lands.
On Wednesday, Pope Francis attended the Indigenous Peoples Forum in Rome and defended the rights of indigenous tribes. The meeting was part of the UN International Fund for Agricultural Development, and Pope Francis addressed 40 representatives of the 300 largest indigenous groups in the world.
According to Reuters, he stated that “The particular characteristics of indigenous peoples and their territories” must be protected. The Pope then mentioned that this is especially true “when planning economic activities which may interfere with indigenous cultures and their ancestral relationship to the earth.”
During his speech, Pope Francis also promoted the full participation of indigenous peoples in local and national government. His insistence that indigenous groups must give prior consent to any economic activity affecting their…
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