Press Releases


Appeal of the indigenous peoples of Russia and Ukraine

Against Putin’s war and against Kremlin-backed organizations in international bodies

Indigenous organizations from Russia and Ukraine have issued a joint statement – together with supporters – in which they condemn Russian President Putin’s war of aggression against Ukraine and demand Kremlin-backed organizations to be excluded from international bodies. These organizations are not to be seen as legitimate representations of the indigenous communities of Russia – and this is especially true of the RAIPON organization, which was re-staffed with government-loyal representatives. The Society for Threatened Peoples (STP) supports these demands. “RAIPON is not to be seen as a voice of the indigenous communities, but as a voice of the Kremlin. Delegates of this organization should not be admitted to any international body – as they are using them to represent Putin’s interests, instead of advocating for the rights of the indigenous communities,” stated Regina Sonk, STP expert on indigenous peoples.  

Several Russian indigenous peoples’ organizations had publicly supported Putin, approving of his war of aggression against Ukraine – including the “Russian Association of Indigenous Peoples of the North“ (RAIPON), the L'auravetl'an Information and Education Network of Indigenous Peoples“ (LIENIP), and the “Association of the Finno-Ugric Peoples of the Russian Federation”

In their appeal to international organizations and missions of states to international organizations, several independent indigenous organizations in Russia and in exile thus demanded that “…organizations that supported Russia’s aggression against Ukraine should lose their consultative status with the UN’s ECOSOC” – and, further, that measures should be taken to ensure that representatives of these organizations will not be able to take part in UN subsidiary bodies such as the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues or the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Whoever supports the killing of civilians and of members of indigenous communities must not be allowed to represent the interests of indigenous peoples on an international level.

For indigenous peoples’ organizations, international platforms such as the United Nations or this year’s Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples are more important than ever. There, indigenous representatives from Russia will meet up with Special Representatives and the Permanent Missions of the USA and the EU. We will be happy to pass on interview requests to indigenous representatives in Russia, in Ukraine, and in exile.

The STP is organizing two EMRIP-events together with the exile organization “International Committee of Indigenous Peoples of Russia”: on July 4 and 5, both from 1 pm to 2:30 pm.  

Registration for “The situation of the indigenous peoples during the war in Ukraine”:

Registration for “While Russia is at war, indigenous rights are eroding”: