Language is key to a brighter future for region that inspired Tolkien, says ethnic speaker at UN talks
This is Matt Wells at U.. N. News career in the Russian Federation is a land of Lakes rivers and forests whose culture inspired Lord of the Rings Author J R token the community proudly says but is at risk from climate change you big industry and a language that is in danger of dying out in an interview with Daniel Johnson Alexi carry off from the Center for support of indigenous peoples in Karelya maintains that indigenous languages and centuries old practices need phone greater protection. We'll begin by hearing some poetry from Alexei in his mother tongue. One had I in Noel Vinyl are color Evelyn Conquer Hilla lowly viansa loudly by Livy Lower Light Bevan backs Houston. Yeah we see a lot of consequences of climate change for example the snow's melting earlier and I remember that when I grew up in my childhood dates we had snow snow already in October and I will have snow only in December December sometimes when January and it impacts the legs for example the ice on the lakes and the fishing it impacts forestry it impacts digital's people's hunting and many other other ways of life which indigenous peoples excise so we see also more wins than we saw before because of the intensive forest industry in Australia and of course the impact of industries which operate in the area for example mining. In or paper industry polluting the air polluting the rivers so this is big concern for indigenous peoples. How many Caribbeans are there then in this part of northwestern Russia and how many other ethnic groups and indigenous groups are they in part of the world in office Russia? We have quite many indigenous people so and we should understand that in Russia we have two types of indigenous peoples recognized a small number indigenous peoples which are people's with the population less than fifty thousand and big groups like mine for example Caribbeans so enough west we have bigger groups as Caribbeans commies and some others and small number does nets Asami vep science and also very very small number North Koreans who are only to sixty people our audience they are only eighty three people left goodness me so really much more needs to be done to raise awareness about the vulnerabilities of indigenous peoples and I know that in your part of the world take the protection of your language is very important and also the fact that there aren't enough caribbeans being born. You've got a demographic gap. That's really building up how you hoping to address those challenges so right. Now we are advocating for the proclamation of the international decayed indigenous languages because we feel that just one year one International Year of indigenous languages is not enough to accomplish our goals and action plan which UNESCO has created in collaboration with indigenous peoples and festival. First of all in my community for example with think that we need to rebuild confidence of indigenous peoples in their own languages because many parents for example don't want the kids to even speaker and because they think this is not necessarily it's not pragmatically useful and we should rebuild this mode to speak on language and we have some good projects community based projects how to do it and we need more support from the international community because as long as the international attention is in place the decision the Russian government for example and the Republican government and even local governments but even more attention to indigenous languages seem also good practices from other regions. Maybe you could tell me about one interesting traditional practice that really is struggling the moment mm two. That's reindeer breeding and herding practice of the brilliant people tell me that a bit about its history and why it's important to the region and how it might be perhaps a chance for re growth and rebirth for the Caribbean people. Yes another grill exercise reindeer herding in the past. Unfortunately this is not the case anymore because of some consequences of the Second World War of occupation of many Koreans in the region's when it came back to guerrillas so they settled in completely different places and the already lost the livestock of the reindeer and of course it would be great to revitalize this tradition because it goes deep to the roots of the cultural traditions to the cultural identity and the coat of these people and it's connected. Very much with the traditional songs for example with the Kalevala epic point which is well known in the world inspired even token to to create his own the rinker how Lord of the Rings to jail token he was inspired by the Kalevala epic epic poem which is our chameleon biggest hit big yeah of course <hes> I mean reindeer herding but also it's important but also of course fishing you cannot imagine millions without fish fish is the main dish for Caroline's and they have a lot of different dishes types of fish for example smelly fish smelly fish dish. What is a smelly fish? Is that a type of fish yeah. It's soccer you know take fish in springtime so then the story in the barrels and they can not only for example in August. It's a little bit smelly but you can still it. It's very tasty and some of the guests are afraid to eat it but it's very tasty I like see I can't say you're selling it to me but I'll come and check it out. Absolutely if you invite me over to Karelya certainly taste it. Maybe just one final question. Just set the scene for me. You step out of your house in the morning. What is it that you see? What is it that you think of in your mind's eye? Now you're speaking to us in Geneva. What is it that you what's the image that comes to mind? Guerrilla is the land of off lakes rivers the forest and that's what I see every single when I wake up and I would like to preserve this for future generations for my kids for everybody who lives in guerrilla or comes to career as a tourist or as.