“An official definition of ‘indigenous’ has not been adopted by any UN-system body. Instead the system has developed a modern understanding of this term based on the following: self-identification as indigenous peoples at the individual level and accepted by the community as their member; historical continuity with pre-colonial and/or pre-settler societies; strong link to territories and surrounding natural resources; distinct social, economic or political systems; distinct language, culture and beliefs; form non-dominant groups of society; [and] resolve to maintain and reproduce their ancestral environments and systems as distinctive peoples and communities.”24


United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. 2006. Indigenous Peoples and Identity. Fact Sheet 1. United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues [online]. Available: http://www​​/socdev/unpfii/documents​/5session_factsheet1.pdf [accessed Jan. 4, 2011].