Secretary Salazar issues statement on indigenous rights
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar released a statement today in response to the Obama administration's decision to review the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

The United States was one of four nations that voted against the declaration in November 2007. Australia and New Zealand have changed their stances, leaving the U.S. and Canada as the only holdouts.

But Susan Rice, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, announced a shift in thinking in a speech at the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues on Tuesday. Salazar said the Interior Department will work with other federal agencies and talk with tribes during the review process.

“As the Administration reexamines the United States’ position regarding the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, we welcome the opportunity for inter-agency collaboration during the review process as well as dialogue with tribal governments and officials within the United States," Salazar said today "This is an important undertaking that directly complements our commitment to supporting tribal self-determination, ensuring tribal self-government, respecting tribal sovereignty and carrying out our unique federal trust responsibilities."

"Working together with the international community, we hope to address the many challenges that indigenous peoples face around the globe," added Salazar.

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