Launch of Congress of Nations & States

The Center for World Indigenous Studies (CWIS), working with Indigenous nations and the world’s states’governments, began the process of organizing the first ever Congress of Nations and States (CNS). The mission of the Congress, which is expected to convene in 2022, is to expand upon the international architecture and set new pathways for mutually beneficial cooperation between nations and states, while benefiting all humanity. 

While global institutions such as the United Nations consist of 193 states, the CNS is a nations and states organization that aims to implement principles of equality and comity already agreed to in such instruments as the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the Climate Change Convention, and the 2014 decisions of the United Nations. 

The Congress was conceived in response to global conflicts, violence, genocides, cultural repressions, inequalities, as well as barriers to reversing the adverse effects of climate change directly threatening many of the worlds’ countries and many Indigenous nations. 

According to Dr. Rudolph Ryser, CWIS Executive Director and CNS Secretary General, ”the 1.9 billion people of the Indigenous nations constitute 24% of the world’s population. They have not engaged as equal partners in the resolution and implementation of policies that set the world on a path of respectful problem solving for all of humanity. This lofty goal is now before us, and the mechanism we have planned is now in the formal establishment process.” More info: 

Mr. Luis Marcos, Chairman of the Congress’ Preparatory Body and Development Director at Comunidad Maya Pixan, states that ”Indigenous nations and the worlds’ state governments must work together to prevent the collapse of biodiversity, massive migrations, and destabilizing violence.” 

Due to the adverse effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, high costs of travel and lodging and the complications of political obstacles, the Congress will be conducted as a virtual/in-person event extended over a period of two weeks or more. 

Sinchi Foundation Founder Tom Wheeler, will be sitting on the Communications Committee of CNS.


About the Center for World Indigenous Studies:

CWIS is a global community of activist scholars advancing the rights of indigenous peoples worldwide through the application of traditional knowledge. For over 40 years, CWIS has been the leading indigenous peoples’ think tank ensuring that communities can safeguard their rights and resources. 

Photo Credit: Ian Macharia