On February 2019, the President of the General Assembly held a high-level event on the global launch of the 2019 International year of indigenous languages in New York, by General Assembly resolution 73/156.
In September 2007, the General Assembly, in its resolution 61/295, adopted the United Nations Declaration of the rights of indigenous peoples. The Declaration provides a comprehensive framework for minimum standards of economic, social and cultural well-being and the rights of the world's indigenous peoples. The Declaration recognizes the rights of indigenous peoples to revive, use, protect, preserve and transmit their history, languages and oral traditions to future generations. It also gives indigenous peoples the right to establish their media and educational systems in their languages.
The outcome document of the 2014 high-level plenary meeting of the General Assembly, known as the world conference on indigenous populations (resolution 69/2), reaffirmed the importance of the role of the United Nations in promoting and protecting the rights of indigenous peoples.
In its resolution 71/178 of 19 December 2016, the General Assembly proclaimed 2019 as the international year of indigenous languages. IAlso n resolution 73/156 of 17 December 2018, the General Assembly requested the President of the General Assembly to support initiatives relevant to the success of the International year, within existing resources. On 19 December 2018, the permanent representative of Mexico to the United Nations, on behalf of the group of friends of indigenous peoples, sent a letter to the President of the General Assembly requesting the President to convene an informal high-level plenary meeting to formally declare the International year of indigenous languages. The President of the General Assembly planned to hold a meeting on February 1, 2019, in the UN General Assembly hall.
In the run-up to the International year of indigenous languages 2019, the United Nations, scientific, educational and cultural organizations have played a leading role, including in the development of the plan of action and the establishment of the Steering committee for the organization of the International year in cooperation with Member States, the Permanent Forum on indigenous issues, the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples and the expert mechanism on the rights of indigenous peoples, as well as with a range of different stakeholders.
Indigenous languages are complex systems of knowledge developed and accumulated over thousands of years. Each indigenous language is a unique system and structure for understanding the world in its environmental, economic or socio-cultural aspects. Indigenous languages are a cultural asset for communication, knowledge-sharing and the promotion of local cultures, customs, and values.
Thus, the loss of indigenous languages means the loss of vital knowledge that can be used for human advancement and sustainable development. Consequently, the disappearance of language has significant negative consequences for indigenous cultures as well as for global cultural diversity.
The plan for the Year of indigenous languages in Russia includes about 700 events that will be held at the Federal level, in regions, cities and even the smallest settlements. We are open to cooperation, exchange of experience, best practices and methods for the preservation and revival of indigenous languages.
This year, in the field of language preservation and development of linguistic diversity in cyberspace, it is planned to organize a High-level international conference on this topic in Russia. We are always ready to support innovative approaches aimed at preserving indigenous languages.
With the assistance of industrial companies Sakhalin energy and LUKOIL, the official website of the International year of languages in the Russian Federation has been developed. This site is opened primarily for Russian scientists, teachers, native speakers, all those who are professionally or voluntarily engaged in the issues of their preservation.
Special Awards have also been established for contributions to the preservation and revival of indigenous languages and media coverage of the Year of indigenous languages. This will increase awareness of the work being done in this area, as well as the prestige and social significance of these languages.