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For Immediate Release

September 1, 2009

Algonquins place bodies in front of logging machines: prevent logging until
Quebec and Canada respect agreements and leadership

Kitiganik/Rapid Lake, Algonquin Territory /- This afternoon members of the
Algonquins of Barriere Lake will peacefully block the machines of
Abitibi-Bowater forestry workers, preventing logging in their territory
until Quebec implements agreements covering forestry on Barriere Lake’s
lands, and the Quebec and Canadian government’s recognize the First Nation’s
legitimate leadership.

“Our community has decided there will be no forestry activities or any new
developments in our Trilateral Agreement Territory until the status of our
leadership and the agreements we signed are resolved to our community’s
satisfaction,” says Jean Maurice Matchewan, Customary Chief of Barriere
Lake. “The Quebec government has acted in bad faith, giving companies the
go-ahead to log while they ignore their legal obligations, leaving us with
no choice but to stop forestry operations until Quebec complies with the
agreement. We have waited more than 3 years for Quebec to implement it.”

Matchewan received no response to a letter he sent to Manager Paul Grondin
of Abitibi-Bowater’s Maniwaki mill on August 25, requesting that the company
suspend logging operations until the governments follow through on their
obligations.

“Our plan is to peacefully put our bodies in front of their machines until
we get some results. We expect they may use the police, because we are used
to such tactics. This is our territory and they can’t push us off our
lands,” says Matchewan.

Canada and Quebec have refused to acknowledge the results of a June 24, 2009
leadership selection process that reselected Jean Maurice Matchewan as the
legitimate Customary Chief of Barriere Lake. National Chief Shawn Atleo of
the Assembly of First Nations, however, met with Chief Matchewan on August
19, to discuss the Trilateral agreement and other community concerns. The
Algonquin Nation Secretariat, a Tribal Council representing three Algonquin
communities including Barriere Lake, also recently reiterated their support
for Chief Matchewan.

“Instead of acting honourably and cooperating with our Customary Council to
implement these signed agreements, the federal and provincial governments
have been working in unison to try and install a minority faction whom they
can use to sign off on the cutting of our forest,” says Matchewan.

Barriere Lake wants Canada and Quebec to uphold signed agreements dating
back to the 1991 Trilateral Agreement, a landmark sustainable development
and resource co-management agreement praised by the United Nations and the
Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples. Canada has been in breach of the
agreement since 2001. Quebec signed a complementary Bilateral Agreement in
1998, but has stalled despite the 2006 recommendations of two former Quebec
Cabinet Ministers, Quebec special representative John Ciaccia and Barriere
Lake special representative Clifford Lincoln, that the agreement be
implemented. The agreement is intended to allow logging to continue while
protecting the Algonquin’s’ traditional way of life and giving them a $1.5
million share of the $100 million in resource revenue that comes out of
their territory every year.

– 30 –

Media contacts:

Chief Jean Maurice Matchewan – 819-435- 2136

To arrange interviews in case the line is busy : 514-398-7432

Watch the video of the October 31, 2008 demonstration at CN headquarters in  Montreal, demanding that they drop their racist lawsuit against Mohawk activists in Tyendinaga.

Update: Support and Stay Tuned:Struggle Continues Against
Armed Border Guards in Akwesasne

Three Mohawks Still in Jail in the Quinte
Regional Detention Centre

 (June 29th, 2009) On June 1st, the Harper government’s decision 
to allow Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) border guards 
carry sidearms was scheduled to be enforced, but the community 
resistance ofAkwesasne Mohawks resulted in the closing of the border
by the Canadian government. 

Since then, the Mohawks of Akwesasne continue to resist the
imposition of armed border guards by the CBSA. Throughout the
Mohawk Nation, actions have been taken demanding that the
Canadian government enter into negotiations on the issue.

On Sunday June 7, Mohawks shut down the Skyway Bridge, which
links Prince Edward County to the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory near
Belleville, Ontario, in solidarity with the community of Akwesasne.
Despite tremendous police pressure, Tyendinaga Mohawks held the bridge
until early Friday morning when local police and the OPP moved in and
ended the blockade.  

Thirteen people were charged and several Mohawk protesters sustained
minor injuries.  Two people were taken to hospital, but were later
released into police custody. Out of the thirteen arrested, three
Mohawks are still in jail.  All of them are being held at the Quinte
Regional Detention Centre. Paul VanHooser and Charles Kloestra have been
denied bail and are detained until trial on mischief charges.  

The Crown is seeking a 6-month sentence for each of them. Shawn Brant,
who was still living under a conditional sentence for participating in
previous blockades, is also being held in custody at least until he
serves out his conditional sentence in prison, until the end of July.  
He is charged with mischief and breaching his conditions.  A trial date
 has not yet been set in his case, and there is no decision yet on whether he
will be held in custody until trial.

After the OPP ended the Skyway Bridge blockade, women from the
community of Tyendinaga returned to the site and retook the bridge for
the remainder of the day, as a further show of resolve to see that
this issue is dealt with in good faith, through respectful
nation-to-nation negotiation.

Please show solidarity by writing to Paul VanHooser, Charles Kloestra,
and Shawn Brant still in custody at:

Name of Person
c/o Quinte Regional Detention Centre
89 Richmond Blvd.
Napanee, ON
K7R 3S1

**Please note: your letters of support are much appreciated but the
jail WILL NOT accept any of the following: photocopied materials,
anything with staples, coloured paper, pictures, newspaper or magazine
articles.  Thanks!

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
To see photos of the Skyway Bridge protest aftermath, go to:
http://picasaweb.google.com/jmkane1220/TyendinagaAftermath#
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
- Tyendinaga Support Committee

Updsdfate: Support and Stay Tuned
Struggle Continues Against Armed Border Guards in Akwesasne
Three Mohawks Still in Jail in the Quinte Regional Detention Centre

	(June 29th, 2009) On June 1st, the Harper government’s decision to allow Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) border guards carry sidearms was scheduled to be enforced, but the community resistance of Akwesasne Mohawks resulted in the closing of the border by the Canadian government. 

Since then, the Mohawks of Akwesasne continue to resist the imposition of armed border guards by the CBSA. Throughout the Mohawk Nation, actions have been taken demanding that the Canadian government enter into negotiations on the issue. On Sunday June 7, Mohawks shut down the Skyway Bridge, which links Prince Edward County to the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory near Belleville, Ontario, in solidarity with the community of Akwesasne. Despite tremendous police pressure, Tyendinaga Mohawks held the bridge
until early Friday morning when local police and the OPP moved in and ended the blockade.

Thirteen people were charged and several Mohawk protesters sustained minor injuries. 

Two people were taken to hospital, but were later released into police custody. Out of the thirteen arrested, three Mohawks are still in jail. 

All of them are being held at the Quinte Regional Detention Centre. Paul VanHooser and Charles Kloestra have been denied bail and are detained until trial on mischief charges. 

The Crown is seeking a 6-month sentence for each of them. 
	
Shawn Brant, who was still living under a conditional sentence for participating in previous blockades, is also being held in custody at least until he serves out his conditional sentence in prison, until the end of July.
	
He is charged with mischief and breaching his conditions. A trial date has not yet been set in his case, and there is no decision yet on whether he will be held in custody until trial.

After the OPP ended the Skyway Bridge blockade, women from the community of Tyendinaga returned to the site and retook the bridge for the remainder of the day, as a further show of resolve to see that this issue is dealt with in good faith, through respectful nation-to-nation negotiation.

Please show solidarity by writing to Paul VanHooser, Charles Kloestra, and Shawn Brant still in custody at:

Name of Person
c/o Quinte Regional Detention Centre
89 Richmond Blvd.
Napanee, ON
K7R 3S1

**Please note: your letters of support are much appreciated but the
jail WILL NOT accept any of the following: photocopied materials,
anything with staples, coloured paper, pictures, newspaper or magazine
articles. Thanks!
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
To see photos of the Skyway Bridge protest aftermath, go to:
http://picasaweb.google.com/jmkane1220/TyendinagaAftermath#
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
- Tyendinaga Support Committee


Press Release

Kanehsatà:ke Mohawk Territory
For July 11, 2009

Re: Fraudulent theft of Mohawk Land by the Municipality of Oka

It has now been 19 years since the “Oka Crisis” when the Municipality of
Oka, developers, in collusion with the Federal and provincial governments
attempted to defraud the Mohawk peoples of Kanehsatà:ke of our ancestral
Pines to make way for the expansion of a 9 hole golf course and a
condominium development.

19 years later, nothing has changed as the Municipality of Oka with the
approval of federal government, continues to defraud Mohawk peoples of our
land and its resources through housing developments, the nationalizing of
Oka Park and through the Kanesatake Interim Land Base Governance Act
(KILBGA).

Since June 6, 2008, I have written 3 letters to the Municipality of Oka,
with the inclusion of both the federal and provincial governments as well
as the Governor General of Canada: Michaëlle Jean, regarding my concerns
of the fraud being committed by the Municipality of Oka and developers.
To date I have not received any response from any level of government or
individual.

The issue that sparked the Crisis of 1990 was the blatant theft of our
homelands, the Mohawk peoples’ sovereignty over those lands and the
continued efforts by governments to undermine and defraud us of our
international human rights to our homelands.

The acceleration of development since 1990 is astounding and has exploited
the hardship and violations of human rights that the Mohawk peoples and
their allies suffered during the Crisis of 1990.  In fact, no level of
government, in particular the Municipality of Oka, has apologized for the
blatant human rights violations, which included the denial of food,
medicine and safety of the Mohawk peoples.  Mohawk men were beaten and
tortured by the Sureté du Québec and members of the Canadian Army.  Mid
August 1990, Kahnawake community members were assaulted with stones when
they tried to leave their community via the Mercier Bridge while the SQ
stood idly by.  Mohawk effigies were burned nightly by racist citizens in
Chateauguay who refused to understand that the blocking of the Mercier
Bridge protected the community of Kanehsatà:ke from a police and army
attack.   To date, the Governments of Canada and Quebec, the Sureté du
Québec and the Municipality of Oka have yet to apologize for their casual
disregard of human rights violations during the 1990 Oka Crisis.

The Mohawk peoples have been waiting for over 300 years for a peace that
never seems to come.  A peace blocked by arrogant, racist governments and
their forced assimilation policies concealing their coveting of our lands
and resources through their legislation.

And so in the past 19 years, what has changed?  It is evident that very
little has changed and that there is a continuation to defraud not just
the Mohawk peoples of Kanehsatà:ke of our lands and access to those
resources, but all Indigenous peoples living in Canada. Therefore the
following recommendations are being put forward to the Government of
Canada and those levels of government that fall under its jurisdiction:

1.      that a legal caution be placed on all current and future development
plans on Mohawk Territory, particularly those taking place within the
Municipality of Oka, especially “Oka Park”, Pointe Calumet, Ste. Marthe,
St. Joseph, St. Eustache et. al..
2.      that the Kanesatake Interim Land Base Governance Act (KILBGA) be
rescinded as the validity of the process is questionable and adversely
affects the rights of the Kanienkehá:ka peoples
3.      Furthermore, that a legal review be conducted by an international human
rights tribunal on the process used by Canada to pass S-24 and that Canada
pay for the cost of the tribunal
4.      that the Kanienkehá:ka (Mohawk) nation, and in particular the community
of Kanehstatà:ke, be accorded the time to begin the process of a strategic
plan that will protect our lands and its resources for future generations.
5.      that a process begins to create a policy for the approval of
development by the traditional government of the Iroquois confederacy on
our territories.
6.      that an apology for the human rights abuses and all propaganda
criminalizing the Mohawk people be given by the Canadian Government, the
Government of Quebec and the Municipality of Oka as quickly as possible in
order to begin the process of reconciliation.
7.      that an environmentally friendly sustainable development program be
implemented throughout Kanienkehá:ka (Mohawk) Territory.
8.      that Government of Canada implement the norm of free, prior and
informed consent for any policy, legislation or development that has the
potential to adversely affect the rights of all Indigenous peoples in
Canada.
9.      that the Government of Canada be accountable for the money it holds in
trust for Indigenous peoples, including the Six Nations Trust Fund, and
that this accountability be made public in an honest and transparent
manner

These are only a few of the necessary recommendations required for the
process of reconciliation and for the rule of law to be respected by the
Government of Canada.  Nothing short of this disavows the honor of the
Crown.

In Peace,
Ellen Gabriel

Turtle Clan
Kanienkehá:ka of Kanehsatà:keIt does not require many words to speak the truth” Chief Joseph, Nez Perce

((FYI - Oka Crisis video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eupyZkLwSPQ))