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Pope Francis sends a tweet on the occasion International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples, observed on August 9.
“How precious is that profoundly genuine sense of family and community among #IndigenousPeoples! And how important it is to cultivate properly the bond between young and old, and to maintain a healthy and harmonious relationship with all of creation!"
Pope Francis tweeted these words on Wednesday as the world marked the International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples. The Day, which is observed on 9 August each year, was established by the United Nations in 1994 to raise awareness and protect the rights of the world's indigenous population.
Pope Francis’ recent “penitential journey” to Canada
Pope Francis’ tweet highlights some of the key themes of his recent "penitential journey" to Canada, during which he aknowledged again the debt owed to indigenous peoples as a result of European colonisation, and apologized for the harm done to First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities in the country, also by some Church institutions.
Role of indigenous women in preserving traditional knowledge
The theme of this year’s Day is the “The role of indigenous women in the preservation and transmission of traditional knowledge”, which is another highlight of Pope Francis weeklong visit to the Northern American Nation.
“To build an equitable and sustainable future that leaves no one behind, we must amplify the voices of Indigenous women," the the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a statement for the Day.
Separately, the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy reaffirmed the European “firm commitment” to respect and protect the rights of indigenous peoples enshrined in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and in the international law.
Decade of Indigenous Languages
This year also marks the the beginning of the Decade of Indigenous Languages (2022 – 2032), which has been established to draw attention to the critical status of many Indigenous languages across the world and encourage action for their preservation, revitalization and promotion.
At least 40% of the 7,000 languages used worldwide are at some level in danger of disappearing. Indigenous languages are particularly vulnerable because many of them are not taught at school or used in the public sphere.
Vatican News staff reporter
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