Emergency Rally
Defend Native Treaty Rights

Burnt Church - Federal boats assault treaty rights
in New Brunswick / Nova Scotia "lobster war." Canada

On Saturday, September 23, the Midwest Treaty Network held an Emergency Rally to Defend Native Treaty Rights at the Canadian consulate in Chicago, at 180 North Stetson Ave. The 1 pm (Central time) rally drew 25 people opposing Canadian government assaults on Mi'kmaqs in New Brunswick , and opposing and Canadian company mining plans on Ojibwa treaty lands in Wisconsin. Participants included members of the Chicago-area Native community, Wisconsin Native communities, Wisconsin students and other citizens concerned about mining proposals, and other people concerned about rights for First Nations. Protesters marched to the Old Fort Dearborn site at the Michigan Avenue Bridge.

Zoltán Grossman of the Midwest Treaty Network said, "A decade ago it was racist anti-Indian groups who were swamping the boats of Ojibwa spearfishers exercising their treaty rights in Wisconsin. Today we see Canadian government boats filling that role against Mi'kmaq fishermen in New Brunswick. Native treaty rights in the Midwest and Northwest U.S. have helped protect fisheries from sulfide mining and other environmental damage, but Ottawa seems to be more interested in undermining its treaties than in protecting the Maritimes' marine environment."

Ned Blackhawk, Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said "The eyes of the world are on Canada to see if it lives up to its reputation as a beacon of human rights and cultural diversity."

Midwestern U.S. supporters of human rights have been asked to call the Consulate at (312) 616-1860 to ask for a peaceful resolution of the stand-off, and respect for Mi'kmaq treaty rights.



  Peaceful resolution to the Mi'kmaq treaty crisis. Canadian police, wardens, and military must halt armed assaults and boat attacks against Mi'kmaq fishing communities in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, before more blood is shed.

  Justice for Mi'kmaq treaty rights. Uphold and respect Mi'kmaq fishing rights from the 1999 Marshall Supreme Court decision, and recognize Mi'kmaqs' management of their small lobster and crab fishery.

  Canadian mining companies out of Wisconsin. The Toronto-based companies Rio Algom or Noranda should drop plans for the Crandon metallic sulfide mine next to the Mole Lake Chippewa (Ojibwa) Reservation in Wisconsin, and affecting other reservations along the sacred Wolf River. For background and bulletins see the Midwest Treaty Network at http://www.treatyland.com. For updates call (800) 445-8615. For comments or contacts call (608) 246-2256 or e-mail mtn@igc.org

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