Chiefs’ assembly passes resolution; AFN national chief to act on it

December 9, 2015

national chief

In a surprise move, chiefs at the AFN’s National Chiefs’ Assembly voted late yesterday to support Resolution #7. The surprise is not in their support, but that the resolution came to a vote so early in the Assembly.

The resolution requires that the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, Perry Bellegarde, communicate the contents of the resolution “by letter to the governments of Canada, Ontario, Quebec, Ottawa, Gatineau, the National Capital Commission and the
Windmill Development Group.”

The legitimate Algonquin First Nations named in the resolution have grown from four chiefs and communities that issued a public and official statement in August 2015 to nine First Nations, namely Abitibiwinni, Barriere Lake, Kebaowek, Kitcisakik, Kitigan Zibi, Lac Simon, Long Point, Timiskaming and Wolf Lake. All are in Quebec.

The resolution includes the following clause that help to define what the Algonquin Nation is:

“…the Kichi Zibi (Ottawa River) is an ancient trade and travel route through the Territory of the Algonquin Nation (and other Indigenous Nations), as are the shores, islands and portages along the route and the Kichi Zibi is not a border or boundary for the Algonquin Nation who pre-existed the creation of Canada and the provinces of Quebec and Ontario.”

An important component of the resolution calls for action to undo previous actions by other elected officials and bodies:

The governments of Canada, Quebec, Ontario and municipal governments of Gatineau and Ottawa are violating the international human rights of the Algonquin Nation as represented by Abitibiwinni, Barriere Lake, Kebaowek, Kitcisakik, Kitigan Zibi, Lac Simon, Long Point, Timiskaming and Wolf Lake as Indigenous Peoples, by proceeding to change the status of the lands within the Algonquin Nation sacred area without meaningful consultation or accommodation, particularly by ignoring the above noted Articles of the UN Declaration [on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples].

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