UN report critical of Sweden’s treatment of the Sami

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The flag of Sweden's indigenous Sami population. (Tommy Engman / Sveriges Radio)
The flag of Sweden’s indigenous Sami population. (Tommy Engman / Sveriges Radio)
The United Nations has criticised Sweden’s mining policy saying the nation should give greater support to the Sami people who are often affected by mining projects, Radio Sami news reports.

The report urges Sweden to “take further measures to facilitate the adoption of the new legislation on Sami rights” especially when the rights of Samis may be affected by the extraction of natural resources and other projects happening in their traditional territories.

Although the UN report praises certain aspects of Sweden’s mineral policy, the committee worried that the Swedish Mining Act allows large industrial projects and other activities in native Sami lands without the people’s informed and free consent.

The UN report also noted the problem of inadequate government compensation when the reindeer of Sami herders are killed by predators, saying the government should find ways to compensate the reindeer herders based on a negotiated settlement.

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