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Six Nations
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Negotiations Updates

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Welcome and thanks for visiting Turtle Island Native Network Your best online source for Aboriginal news and information

February 2006 - April 2011

PERSPECTIVE
Six Nations Elected Council nixes Confederacy
May 2010
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Six Miles Deep

A First Nations perspective
of the Caledonia clash over Six Nations land rights

A Documentary
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Non-native support
Fighting the right-wingers

March 2010
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Money is not the answer
Six Nations land rights update
January 2010
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BACKGROUND


Support
Unions and "allies" rally and march
to show solidarity with Six Nations land rights

November 2009
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BACKGROUND

Google
 

Land Rights, Land Claims
Whatever you call them - progress is lacking!
October 2009
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Despite Six Nations court action
Canada says it will stay at negotiations table
July 9th, 2009
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Vigilante Action Against Six Nations
Caledonia Conflict Resurrected by Radical
June 23rd, 2009
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Injunction against Haudenosaunee Men's Fire
Superior Court judge rules against land rights protestors
April 4, 2009
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Cops Use Violence!
Six Nations activists arrested trying to halt illegal dumping
December 11, 2008
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No to $26 Million!
Six Nations rejects inadequate, mystery land claim offer from Canada
September 8, 2008
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Court Injunction
Land rights activists ordered to stay away from development sites
June 4th, 2008
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Solidarity for Our People - Six Nations rally

Brantford seeks injunction against land rights activists
May 30, 2008
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Claims that riots are inevitable
City of Brantford takes legal action against Six Nations land rights activists
a demand for support from the Canadian military
May 23, 2008
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Hazel Hill's Update
March / April 2008
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Second Anniversary of Kanehstanton
But it's been more than two years in the making
February 28, 2008
News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas - Bob Kennedy ( Onyota'a:ka / Oneida )

Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network http://www.turtleisland.org

Six Nations land rights warriors have no plans to leave Kanehstanton - the Caledonia, Ontario reclamation site. That confirmation from Hazel Hill, quoted in mainstream media reports, on this the second anniversary of the action that halted a luxurious residential development - the Douglas Creek Estates subdivision, located on disputed Six Nations land in southern Ontario.

Recently at Queens Park, provincial Opposition rhetoric heated up again, with demands for action against the protestors, by John Tory right-wing leader of the Conservatives. The provincial Liberals have chosen to respect the negotiation process.

In Ottawa, Liberal Indian Affairs Critic Anita Neville, noting two years have passed without resolution, said the federal Conservative government must finally take a leadership role and act to bring resolution to the two-year Caledonia land claim dispute as quickly as possible. "Having recently visited Caledonia, I can report first-hand the frustration from all sides regarding the lack of leadership of the federal government," said Ms. Neville. She called it "Canada's longest-running Aboriginal standoff". Ms. Neville added, "The lack of progress is bad enough, but it's the lack of interest from the Conservatives that is inexcusable. The local Member of Parliament, Diane Finley is a Cabinet Minister and, as such, there is no excuse for this vacuum of leadership. The local MP, the Minister of Indian Affairs and the Prime Minister should be ashamed of themselves for allowing the dispute to go on this long."

As a matter of fact, if these people would set aside their political egos for a moment, they could aknowledge that there is due process at play, and there really has been progress.

Different nations, different cultures have come together - hot sparks at times, yes. But a recognized negotiation process has replaced vigilante violence. Respect for the traditional longhouse people has improved immensely, with both Haudenosaunee, and elected Six Nations representatives putting forth the interests in talks where reason from good minds, not hotheads, has prevailed.

Money and lands have been put on the table to consider. There are offers and counter offers, confirmation research continues, and so does dialogue and goodwill. Remember, this Six Nations/Canada dispute is broader than Caledonia, and has been much more than a hundred years in the making, certainly not just two.


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Hazel Hill's Update (.pdf file)
"We are at the negotiations table today because of the people"
January 28, 2008
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$26 Million
Six Nations land claim negotiations breakthrough
December 12, 2007
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Caledonia confrontation
Natives and non-natives face criminal charges
December 7, 2007
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Historic decision
Court recognized Haudenosaunee law and culture in setting conditions of bail
EXCLUSIVE REPORT

October 28th, 2007
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Politics / Violence / Negotiations / Confederacy Progress
Hazel Hill's Update
September 25th , 2007
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New Development Protest Site Attracts Attention / Tension - Then Violence
September 15th , 2007
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The $125 Million Offer
Hazel Hill's Update
June 4, 2007
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As Commissioner Sidney Linden released the Report of the Ipperwash Inquiry he said,
"Ipperwash is important because it helps us to understand the roots and dynamics of an Aboriginal occupation.
The Aboriginal occupation at Caledonia proves that Ipperwash was not an isolated event.
Understanding Ipperwash can help us to understand how to prevent Aboriginal occupations and protests in the first place,
or how to reduce the risk of violence, if they do occur."
May 31, 2007
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Pissed off Cops and Robbers(of the land)
Kanehstanton update
April 15, 2007
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February 28, 2007
Anniversary of the Land Reclamation Action . . .

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Six Nations Healing
Caledonians and Their Supporters Stew
December 31, 2006

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Controversial Caledonia Standoff Court Ruling Overturned
Ontario Court of Appeal
December 14, 2006
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PERSPECTIVE
Digging in for the Winter
(audio report)
Brantford Expositor November 18, 2006

- - - - - - -
Chiefs Presentations Counter Canada's Version of History
Negotiations Update by Hazel Hill
November 16th, 2006
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Canada Reveals Its Hand
As a Matter of Fact - Mohawk History Speaks for Itself
November 6th, 2006
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Haudenosaunee Confederacy Land Rights Statement

- Adopted in Council, November 4, 2006 -

The Council of Chiefs of the Haudenosaunee, Grand River Territory, wish to affirm and clarify our land rights in the tract confirmed by Governor Frederick Haldimand on October 25, 1784. In making this statement, the Council of Chiefs wants to make it clear that we hold certain land ethics and principles that must be respected in any agreements on land use or occupation. The Haudenosaunee, and its governing authority, have inherited the rights to land from time immemorial. Land is a birthright, essential to the expression of our culture.

With these land rights come specific responsibilities that have been defined by our law, from our Creation Story, the Original Instructions, the Kaianeren:kowa (Great Law of Peace) and Kariwiio (Good Message). Land is envisioned as Sewatokwa'tshera't, (the Dish with One Spoon); this means that we can all take from the land what we need to feed, house and care for our families, but we also must assure that the land remains healthy enough to provide for the coming generations. Land is meant to be shared among and by the people and with the other parts of the web of life. It is not for personal empire building.

First and foremost is the concept that we are connected to the land in a spiritual way. The earth is our mother and she provides for our long-term well-being, provided that we continue to honour her and give thanks for what she has provided. We Haudenosaunee have upheld our tradition of giving thanks through ceremony, and in the cultural practices that manifest our beliefs, values, traditions and laws. Planting, cultivating, harvesting, gathering, hunting, and fishing also have spiritual aspects that must be respected and perpetuated if the land is to provide for our future generations, and the future generations of our neighbours. We are stewards. Our spiritual obligation is part of that stewardship.

Second, according to our law, the land is not private property that can be owned by any individual. In our worldview, land is a collective right. It is held in common, for the benefit of all. The land is actually a sacred trust, placed in our care, for the sake of the coming generations. We must protect the land. We must draw strength and healing from the land. If an individual, family or clan has the exclusive right to use and occupy land, they also have a stewardship responsibility to respect and join in the community's right to protect the land from abuse.

We have a duty to utilize the land in certain ways that advance our Original Instructions. All must take responsibility for the health of our Mother.

Our ancestors faced overwhelming odds and relentless pressure to give up our lands. We all know that unscrupulous measures were employed to seduce our ancestors into "selling" the land. At other times, outright fraud took place, as was acknowledged in the Royal Proclamation of 1763. The agreements we recognize reflect an intention to share land, and to lease land, within the context of the Covenant Chain relationship that our nations maintain with the Crown.

Our wampum belts, treaty council documents and oral history inform us that we always retained the right to hunt, fish, and gather upon all of our lands. This reflects the spirit of sharing that we expect to continue, and is another example of the Dish with One Spoon.

We seek justice in our long-standing land rights issues. We seek an accurate accounting of the use and investment of the funds held by the Crown on our behalf, and land transactions conducted by the Crown involving our lands. For nearly two hundred years our Chiefs have been asking for such accounting and justice. Generations of our elders have passed away with these matters unresolved. It is time to end the injustice.

Our faith in the Canadian people is strong, as we feel that the majority of Canadians also want to see justice on these matters. However, their elected representatives and public servants have failed to act effectively to address and resolve these matters. It is time to lift the cloud of denial and to wipe away the politics that darken the vision of the future. It is time we are heard clearly, and our cases should be addressed with utmost good faith and respect. We firmly believe that if we have respect and trust, we will find mutually agreeable solutions that will reflect our long-standing friendship

We want the land that is ours. We are not interested in approving fraudulent dispossessions of the past. We are not interested in selling land. We want the Crown to keep its obligations to treaties, and ensure all Crown governments -- federal, provincial and municipal -- are partners in those obligations. We want an honourable relationship with Canada.

That relationship, however, must be based on the principles that were set in place when our original relationship with the Crown was created. That is the rule of law that we seek. It involves the first law of Canada -- the law that Canada inherited from both France and Britain. It is the law of nations to respect the treaties, to not steal land, or take advantage of indigenous peoples by legal trickery. As the Supreme Court of Canada has frequently stated, where treaties are involved, the honour of the Crown is always at stake.

We seek to renew the existing relationship that we had with Crown prior to 1924. That relationship is symbolized by the Tehontatenentsonterontahkwa ("The thing by which they link arms") also known as the Silver Covenant Chain of Peace and Friendship. Our ancestors met repeatedly to repolish that chain, to renew its commitments, to reaffirm our friendship and to make sure that the future generations could live in peace, and allow the land to provide its bounty for the well-being of all of the people. The Covenant Chain symbolizes our treaty relationship, also symbolized by Tekani Teyothata'tye Kaswénta (Two Row Wampum) which affirms the inherent sovereignty and distinctness of our governments. An essential part of the relationship is our commitment to resolve matters through good-faith negotiation between our governments, including consultation on any plans which might affect the other government or its people.

In any land issues, we want it understood that the following principles will govern any actions taken by the Haudenosaunee Council of Chiefs of the Grand River Territory:

1) The land is sacred to us. It defines our identities, belief system, languages and way of life.

2) We hold the aboriginal and treaty title to our lands collectively.

3) Our treaty relationship with the Crown is still alive and in force and directs our conduct in our relationship to Canada. Within this relationship, the terms of the treaties continue to bind both our government and the Crown.

4) We require a careful accounting for the Crown's dealing with our lands, and the return of any lands that were improperly or illegally taken from our ancestors.

5) We require an accounting for the funds administered or held by the Crown for the Six Nations people, and restitution of any funds unaccounted for.

6) It is not only within the context of our treaty relationship with the Crown that we see justification for such accounting and restitution. Canadian and international law is clear on the right of the Haudenosaunee to seek justice on these matters.

7) In any agreements with the Crown concerning land our goal is to promote and protect a viable economy for our people on our land -- an economy that will be culturally appropriate, environmentally sustainable, and not injurious to our people and our neighbours.

Our fundamental approach is that Six Nations lands will come under the jurisdiction, management and control of Six Nations people. The federal and provincial governments must not impose jurisdictional, policing, taxation, and/or economic activities as part of the land rights settlement.

Our people, our laws, and our government have survived by being thoughtful, respectful, diligent and practical. In our relations with the Crown, and in any negotiations concerning land and the resolution of land-related issues, we will continue to apply those principles.


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PERSPECTIVE
Ontario cops "go political"
Poll results create issue of a deadline
October 22, 2006
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BACKGROUND REPORTS
Various Perspectives
2006
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Culture (traditional and contemporary)
at Six Nations Land Reclamation Site
Photo by Zainab
Photo Courtesy of Zainab Anadahy

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Negotiations Resume!
August 23, 2006

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PERSPECTIVE - Six Nations and History
Neither the British nor the American leaders could accept Indians
as landlords, as competitors . . .
August 19, 2006

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Peace Survives
Despite politics, legal judgments, antagonism and flair ups of tension
Youth receive cultural training in the Haudenosaunee traditions
August 11, 2006
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Judge orders end to negotiations until people leave disputed land.
Ontario appeals court ruling

Canada maintains hands-off approach
August 8-10th,2006
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Haudenosaunee/Six Nations-Canada-Ontario negotiations evolve into new phase
side tables will address specific issues
July 27, 2006
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PERSPECTIVE
First Nations Want Justice for Land Thefts
Richard Powless
July 15, 2006
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Update from the Six Nations Land Reclamation Site
Hazel Hill has been reflecting on the past and learning from the past
July 12, 2006
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First Nations public support
for beleaguered Commissioner of the Ontario Provincial Police
for her handling of the Caledonia crisis

July 11, 2006
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Message of Peace
Hazel Hill's Update from Kanenhstanton
July 1st, 2006
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"We are here until the land is back in title to the original titleholders
and according to the original agreement."
Hazel Hill
Update from Kanenhstanton
Six Nations land reclamation site near Caledonia, Ontario
June 23, 2006
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(Use Macromedia Schockwave Player to View)
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Developer Gets $12.3 Million for Disputed Six Nations Land
June 22, 2006
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ARRESTED!
June 21, 2006

A 47 year old Six Nations resident of Ohsweken was arrested by the Ontario Provincial Police in connection with an incident in Caledonia on June 4, 2006. Ken Hill faces two counts of Assault related to an incident involving an alleged confrontation between the -occupiers- and Caledonia citizens near a barricade at the end of Braemar Ave. Hill is one of seven suspects named in warrants issued by the police related to violence earlier this month near the Six Nations land reclamation site.

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Benefit Concert in Support of Six Nations Land Reclamation
June 16, 2006
Thousands Attended the Peaceful, Very Musical Gathering
Several Dozen Performers Played for Free
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Woman Arrested for Violence
June 16, 2006
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Remaining Barricades Come Down!
June 13, 2006

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

June 13, 2006 - The remaining barricades are coming down at the Six Nations land reclamation site near Caledonia.

This latest show of good faith by Confederacy Chief Allan Mcnaughton and the Clan Mothers is aimed at keeping the important land rights negotiations going.

The action follows this past weekend's violence, and subsequent uproar over the alleged behaviour of a few First Nations protestors.

It was "a powder keg about to blow", stated NDP leader Jack Layton in the House of Commons, as he called on the federal government to settle the decades-old dispute . . . He asked the Prime Minister if "his party had learned nothing since OKA?".

Indian Affairs Minister Jim Prentice proudly announced he was encouraged by the steps taken by Six Nations, particularly Chief McNaughton and the Clan Mothers.

Prentice informed parliament that Six Nations took steps Tuesday "to remove the remaining barricades near Caledonia, including the rail line".

He said, "this goes a long way to removing a huge source of tension in the community, and to build trust". The Indian Affairs Minister added, "we are encouraged, we continue to look forward to making progress and we are hopeful of what lies in the days ahead".

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Violence - Injuries - Arrests
June 10th - 12th, 2006

Violence in Caledonia where the Ontario Provincial Police wore riot gear, and their helicopter flew overhead shining its spotlight down onto the rowdies.

At least one local resident was arrested during a clash with police. Two CH TV staff were injured and went to hospital. They said they were injured by Natives trying to prevent them from video taping a confrontation with a couple whose car they had surrounded. The man was taken to hospital after his wife said he suffered a heart attack.

"Calm, understanding and respect from everyone involved," is what Premier Dalton McGuinty called for, as negotiations continued to try to resolve the many issues related to the Six Nations land reclamation efforts.

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Peace Shattered by Police "Mistake"
June 5th, 2006

It was a sleepless night for Natives and local residents thanks to the wailing sirens.

A shaky peace has returned to the Six Nations land reclamation site in Caledonia, Ontario after an overnight clash - a brief but scary one. The CBC reported the trouble was sparked when two Ontario Provincial Police officers drove into an area Six Nations protestors had declared off-limits. Natives and non-natives swarmed the area and the police had to keep them apart. But not before the crowd caused trouble, forcing the police to block Argyle street to contain the situation and prevent it from getting worse. One report said a car was torched and there were several assaults.

On the political front, the opposition Conservatives in Ontario are demanding a public inquiry into the province's handling or more specifically mis-handling of the Caledonia crisis. There is a scheduled debate on the matter in the Ontario Legislature. Conservative leader John Tory blames the McGuinty government for lack of substantial progress in addressing the situation, something he said is the responsibility of both the provincial and federal governments.

Meanwhile, back at the reclamation site, it is being reported the O.P.P. officers did not deliberately break the peace, but were new on patrol and didn't realize they had crossed into a so-called prohibited zone. The latest incident has sparked a new round of demands by local residents for the military to be called in to deal with the protestors. One question posted on a local electronic community bulletin board asked, How does a peaceful protest translate into surrounding a police car, a car fire and 2 assaults?

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Press Release : For Immediate Release
June 4, 2006

Six Nations people keep the peace despite OPP tactics

KANENHSTATON, GRAND RIVER TERRITORY OF THE SIX NATIONS- Six Nations Haudenosaunee, in an effort to support continued peaceful negotiations, averted a major altercation between OPP, Caledonia residents and the Haudenosaunee Sunday night, that had been sparked by an Ontario Provincial Police incident, unrelated to the reclamation site.

At about 8 p.m. Sunday night, an OPP cruiser was found on 6th Line near Cayuga Road. The cruiser had apparently been following a car down 6th LIne when it was spotted by Six Nations people who surrounded the cruiser. Six Nations police were called to the scene. Two OPP officers were found inside the cruiser with a female constable telling Six Nations people, from the neighbourhood, she was “lost.”

The two officers and the cruiser were released to OPP after Six Nations Police charged the officers with trespassing. Six Nations Police and OPP have a mutual aid agreement. However, OPP are required to seek permission to enter Six Nations territory. That did not happen in this incident .

The OPP incident led to a standoff on Argyle Street, between Haudenosaunee and Caledonia people who had once again gathered blocking Argyle Street behind an OPPline. The Caledonia residents carried placards and signs reading “Bring in the Army.” The stand off continued until about 11 p.m. when Six Nations people, again, moved back onto the reclamation site, leaving the Caledonia crowd blocking the roadway.

“There were concerns that a barricade may go back up, but we want to make it clear, that the incident involving the OPP officer had nothing to do with the reclamation site,” said reclamation site spokeswoman, Hazel Hill.

“The people at the reclamation site fully support our negotiating team and efforts to reach a peaceful resolution that will see the reclamation lands returned to the Haudenosaunee.”

For further information, contact: Spokeswoman Hazel Hill,br> (519)865-7723


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The Police and First Nations Protests
Background Research from the Ipperwash Inquiry
May 2006
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Photo Courtesy of David Maracle

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Read Hazel Hill's Updates
From the Reclamation Site
May 28, 2006
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Calm Returned After Violence Erupted
Barricades Removed But Land Reclamation Protest Continues. . .
May 25, 2006
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Photo Courtesy of David Maracle

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News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

May 23, 2006

Six Nations leaders and the land rights protestors have repeatedly said peace was their priority and they would make every effort to bring about a peaceful resolution to the conflict. Today they proved their point again, through good will, when they began dismantling their barricade, for the second day.

The calm came after the storm, but the tension remained. An eruption of violence Monday at the site of a Six Nations land rights protest was sparked by non-native protestors. They established a barricade down the road from where Natives dismantled their barricades as a show of good will. The non-natives confronted the Natives and all hell broke loose. Scuffles, fist fights, verbal abuse from both sides of the conflict. When the locals refused to go home, the Six Nations people put their barricade back up again and dug in their heels. A large police presence was established to put a lid on the violence.

A state of emergency was declared by Haldimand County after electricity stopped flowing into the area, when a car was deliberately driven into a hydro tower.

Hazel Hill of Six Nations who has provided updates from the site, commented on the events of yesterday, "The intention of our people to keep the peace and opening the road was being met with anger and threats to our safety. Needless to say, because the O.P.P. were unable to convince those representing Caledonia to disassemble their human blockade and go home and allow us to proceed as planned with the peaceful negotiations, the barricades were put back up.

At one point, one of the elders of our people had offered a symbolic gesture to let them know that we still are upholding the peace and that they must choose which direction they wanted to proceed, but he was met with hollering and insults from the non-native protesters.

I must add as well that in speaking with the O.P.P., they had mentioned that many many Caledonia residents were deeply disappointed in the people who were instigating the people on their side, and that many believe that those present who were causing the disruption, were not residents of Caledonia and that they were outsiders who's main intent was to instigate trouble. and that they did".

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May 22, 2006

As their families and friends lined up for bread and cheese back on the rez, Six Nations protestors dismantled their barricades at the site of a residential development.

A shocking display of rowdy-boy behaviour by non-natives sparked a new conflict at Douglas Creek Estates. . .

Native protestors did what they said they would - they removed the barricades in the morning. But their efforts to bring it all to a peaceful end, were thwarted by troublemakers from the local community of Caledonia.

The fact it was a long weekend seemed to provide an opportunity for gawkers and rowdies - non-native protestors gathered and set up their own blockade, and that triggered tension, followed by violence - pushing shoving, a few fist fights, and then dozens of police officers were forced to come between the groups.

Six Nations protestors and supporters re-established the barricades because of the confrontational situation that erupted as a result of the non-native action.

It started off as a day that promised peaceful resolution, but it ended in a way that was unforeseen - tension filled the air, fueled by anger, frustration and disappointment. A Six Nations goodwill gesture was quashed, by the shortsighted provocative actions of local non-native community members.

Premier Dalton McGuinty issued a statement, "I want to join with people across Ontario in calling for calm and goodwill in Caledonia. The confrontation we saw today has no place in our society - and it does nothing to help resolve this difficult situation. I want to commend the Ontario Provincial Police for their outstanding professionalism in restoring order to a very tough situation. Over the past several weeks, all parties made progress in building trust and mutual respect. Today's events were an unhelpful setback. However, we must continue working to find common ground and move forward in a peaceful environment. Our government is committed to working alongside the federal government, local officials and First Nation representatives to ensure that we find a lasting solution that allows all parties to renew their shared commitment to building a strong community".

May 21, 2006 - The protest at the site of the Douglas Creek Estates in Caledonia, Ontario will end Monday - there has been sufficient progress in land rights talks, that Six Nations leaders have agreed to the dismantling of all barricades tomorrow. This follows agreements by governments to address Six Nations interests in the short term as well as long standing issues that will take ongoing negotiations to resolve.

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News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

May 20, 2006

Canadians call it the Victoria Day holiday weekend. But at Six Nations it is known as independence Day or Bread and Cheese Day weekend - a celebration of the historic nation-to-nation respectful relationship between Six Nations and the Queen.

Despite the heavyness of recent events over land rights and a protest at Caledonia, the Six Nations will be celebrating with bread and cheese - a recognition of their historic treaty of alliance with the British Crown. It is a timely reminder to the Crown, a.k.a. the Government of Canada and the province of Ontario.

Land rights talks continue next week.

Moving Forward - Progress Reported!

Negotiations involving the Six Nations Confederacy, Canada and Ontario, have produced an environment of optimism.

"There is progress and maturity," in the Six Nations land rights dispute, according to Chief Allen MacNaughton.

Chief MacNaughton, Cayuga Sub-Chief Leroy Hill and David Peterson representing Ontario are the negotiators who are trying to ease current tensions over a land rights dispute in Caledonia. Chief MacNaughton says he's very pleased that protestors are gradually disengaging at the site. In fact, they have shown great responsibility in ensuring that emergency vehicles as well as local traffic have been able to pass through the area with ease. Protesters have removed some of the items that form their blockage, such as rock piles. Encampments, including the cookhouse and other facilities have been moved farther off the road and onto the disputed lands.

"All this means that the protesters have taken the high road in showing that public safety is paramount, but they haven't backed off their position at all. Their actions reflect what was discussed at the bargaining table and bodes well for the future," says Chief MacNaughton.


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News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

May 17, 2006

Six Nations land rights progress this week - includes a moratorium on development activities of the Douglas Creek Estates, and the agreement by the Ontario Government to turn over title of the Burtch lands - lands of the former Burtch Correctional Facility.

The provincial government also promised to conduct a complete environmental review of the lands to ensure health and safety for Six Nations access to the lands. In exchange, the Six Nations Confederacy has agreed to move toward more dismantling of the protest barricades in Caledonia, providing greater access routes in the area.

The progress was confirmed in writing by former premier David Peterson, and David Ramsay the Minister of Natural Resources and responsible for Aboriginal Affairs in Ontario. Formal letters were sent to the Confederacy.

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May 16, 2006
Barricades PARTIALLY Removed
Show of Good Faith by Six Nations Confederacy
A route has been cleared for better access to the local hospital.
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Update May 14, 2006
News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

There were mainstream media reports quoting a Confederacy leader that the protest at Douglas Creek Estates in Caledonia would soon end.

That came as a surprise to the protestors, like Hazel Hill who said, "First, everyone, know that we are still here. We are not going anywhere. There have been many media releases suggesting that the barricades are coming down and leading the outside world into the false belief that we are somehow going away. Not so. There have been many discussions about the barricades. The discussions are very long and deep regarding our position. We have no intention of leaving our reclaimed lands. We will not abandon our position, or walk away. We know how deeply the situation at Grand River affects all of our brothers and sisters in all Onkwhonweh Territories. We will not jeopardize the position of all of us. All Onkwehonweh Nations who stand in solidarity with us have as much at stake as we do".

Negotiations continue between Six Nations, Ontario and federal governments, and part of the discussions is the opening of certain roads and lifting of particular barricades.

However, according to those manning the barricades, for now it is talk and no decision has been made yet.

Meanwhile, Hazel Hill explained that friendly visitors to the protest site helped boost spirits this weekend. They had visitors from the Saa'mi Nation of Finland.

"They arrived at the camp on Thursday night. They have been working on a documentary to share with their People when they return home to Finland. We received a few more flags from other friends and allies. One from Scotland. I think I already told you about the one from Denmark. We've had contacts from a young native man who works for a paper in Dublin Ireland. He is doing his best to get our story out over there.

It has been very exciting and an honor to know each and every one of you who has been supporting and sending our message further and further".


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Tekarihoken (Mohawk Chief Allan McNaughton)

Confederacy Leader Quoted
Caledonia Protest Will Soon End

May 13, 2006
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Six Nations Benefit Concert Scheduled for June 2006 . . .

Our Indigenous artists would be honored to entertain all our brothers, sisters, friends and allies by inviting you all to a Benefit Concert June 16th, Chiefswood Pak in Support of Six Nations.

Admittance to the concert will be by cash donation. We appreciate all the Indigenous artists and musicians who have already signed up.

We continue to call on our fellow musicians, entertainers and artists to perform. You will have until May 31, 2006 to confirm your availability and support for that day. We are still looking for performers in traditional, contemporary, rock and roll, country, rap, blues, drummers and so on. All performers know that they will be doing this on their own dime.

Well known Indigenous Actor, Gary Farmer, Pow Wow Highway, Smoke Signals and Indigenous Actress/Singer Chevei Maracle have confirmed their support as MC for this benefit.

You are all welcome to come, support us and enjoy some of the finest Indigenous talent. Rest assured there will be plenty of food and camping space available. Indigenous artists can make a difference.

Let's all take a stand together. One gentleman has already donated a whole cow, for a big beef roast. Keep up the great work everyone. Is there anyone out there willing to donate a pig or two for roasting as well?


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Photo Courtesy of Sharon Menow
Photo Courtesy of Sharon Menow

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From Marches to Music
Support Continues for Six Nations Land Rights and Reclamation

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

Updated May 11, 2006

Knock knock. Whose there? Six Nations supporters!

If the Governor General is at home in Ottawa this weekend, we hope she will continue to make an effort to listen to First Nation peoples concerns - something she has focused on during her provincial visits across the country.

Aboriginal women in Ottawa plan to march on the Governor General's official residence at Noon, Saturday, May 13th. Marchers plan to gather at the park near St. Patrick's Bridge and the Vanier Parkway.

Organizers from the Aboriginal community in Ottawa explained, "In solidarity with the people of Six Nations and in struggle with all First Nations across Turtle Island, the people of Ottawa are going to the Queen's representative to demand an immediate solution to land rights disputes everywhere. Treaties made between the Six Nations and the British Crown are being trampled by governments that didn't exist. Neither the Federal nor Provincial governments have jurisdiction on Six Nations land near Caledonia. Because thousands of heavily armed police have surrounded an unarmed camp of people for nearly a month, we march. Because the Canadian government is continually responsible for human rights abuses of indigenous communities, we march. Because racist rallies are happening in the countryside, we march. Stop the Attack on all First Nations. Recognize Land Rights Across Canada!"

Photo by Zainab
Photo Courtesy of Zainab Anadahy

A Tyendinaga Mohawk musician and artist, David Maracle has issued a challenge to Native entertainers to come together in support of land rights at Six Nations.

"I am calling all my fellow Aboriginal musicians, entertainers and artists to band together to show OUR support, and give back to OUR communities, and do a Benefit concert up in Six Nations, at the Site of Reclamation. I am trying to establish interest in this initial contact."

Maracle explained he has received an overwhelming response for this free concert. Everyone will come on their own dime, "but we have been assured that their will be plenty of food and camping space available. We as Aboriginal Artists, have clout and will have the EYE of the Media and the Eyes of the World upon us. We can make a difference right now."

Maracle can be reached at 613-396-2767, or cell at 613-391-5132.

- - - - - - -Six Nations protestors treated to non-native spectacle
Noisy - Peaceful Rally at Caledonia Protest Site . . .

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

May 6, 2006

Here is an excerpt from the Six Nations update by Hazel Hill at the Caledonia site, "There was alot of hoopla over nothing last night as far as the Caledonia Rally was concerned. No sheets, alot of noise and some rumblings about busting through the police lines but all was quiet and over probably by 11pm . . .

Our people were well represented and majority stayed back near the main gate as was suggested by security to show that we are maintaing the peace, respecting their right to rally, and there was drumming, laughter and basically time to socialize . . .

This weekend there are a few clan meetings happening, grand council this morning, and tomorrow there is a gathering of the people called for 1 pm at Chiefswood Park. The idea is to come as people only, remove titles and any other labels at the gate, and come together as a people. It is a good attempt at removing the barriers of division that have existed for a long time at Six Nations. The people are determined to unite in peace, and I am very proud of everyone who has taken an active roll in seeing that this happens . . .

We should have more of an idea as to who will be sitting at the table when the talks start. We know the province of Ontario has appointed Jane Stewart, and Canada has appointed Barbara Mcdougall. Our people are still discussing who is going to be the voice of the people. It should all be worked out by Tuesday morning when talks are to resume . . . We are One and We will Continue as One".

Tom Keefer, who witnessed the Friday night rally by non-natives reported, "The good news is that it was a lot smaller, about half the size of the gathering last Friday. The gathering was also a lot more subdued, with no fire barrel, and very little in the way of chanting, air horns and public drunkenness . . .

There was one ugly incident when a Native woman crossed from the Six Nations side and was verbally attacked by a crowd of white people as she was escorted through by police. Following this incident, a few townspeople marched to the front of the police line and had a verbal confrontation with the cops demanding to be similarly let through the Native lines but this just ended up being an argument with the police /as well as a few non-native Caledonians who were trying to talk some sense into the racists . . .

There was no sign of any overt and organized neo-Nazi presence at the rally and many of the townspeople protesting tried to make the argument that they weren't racist, but just wanted the road open. One protester pointed out that since there were a half-dozen people of color in the protest, the demonstration was multicultural and not racist . . .

I think that it is safe to assume that because of the publicization of the KKK leaflets, a fair number of local residents did not come to the protest. At the height of the protest at around 8:30 p.m. there were about 350 townspeople. That declined to about 200 people at 9:30 p.m. and less than 100 people at 10:30 p.m . . .

I went expecting it to be extremely tense and that townspeople would confront -outsiders- but it was really quite subdued.

There was a major OPP presence of at least 100 officers on the line blocking highway Six and a few dozen more in uniform sprinkled throughout the crowd."

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Photo Courtesy of Autonomy and Solidarity web site
Photo of Elder Jacqueline House - Courtesy of Autonomy and Solidarity web site
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Canada Names Former External Affairs Minister
Ontario Names Former Indian Affairs Minister
to Six Nations Negotiations

May 5th, 2006 Update
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News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org
May 3, 2006

Barbara McDougall, Canada's former Minister of External Affairs in the Mulroney Government, has been appointed the Harper Government's senior representative at the special Six Nations discussions table.

"With her experience in politics, law and community service, she fully appreciates the complexities of the situation and will help bring about an honourable resolution,"said Indian Affairs Minister Jim Prentice, who announced the appointment.

As outlined in the agreement reached on April 21 by all parties Prentice explained, "Ms. McDougall has the mandate to work with provincial, municipal and Six Nations representatives to develop a detailed work plan that will provide for effective ways to address and resolve outstanding issues related to land claims and governance."

The work plan developed by the representatives will then be presented to all parties for approval.

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Doreen Silversmith of Six Nations was in Geneva, Switzerland to inform the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights , of her peoples troubles in Caledonia, Ontario.
May 1, 2006

DOREEN SILVERSMITH, Sixth Nations Confederacy, said the Committee should remind the Government of Canada of its obligations under the right to self-determination, and take note of the Committee's concluding observations of 1998, in which it stated that Aboriginal poverty was directly connected to dispossession of their lands.

The Committee should recommend that Canada refrain from its current practice of allowing private companies to exploit First Nations lands over which title was in dispute.


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April 30, 2006

The Ontario Government named David Peterson as the Provincial Lead to help find solutions to immediate problems in Caledonia. According to a government news release, "Peterson will focus on urgent concerns, aiming to restore calm and return the community to normal conditions, paving the way for discussions on the longer term, underlying issues . . . With Mr. Peterson working closely with Six Nations and the community on finding short term solutions, others can focus on some of the root causes of the protest," said David Ramsay, Minister Responsible for Aboriginal Affairs.

On Friday the province made a commitment to the developer and builders for immediate funding assistance related to the Douglas Creek Estates. The Ontario Government also identified the province's toll-free number 1-866-876-7672 the TTY number at 1-800-387-5559, for residents to get information on the situation in Caledonia - Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Local Residents Protest Against the Protest
April 29, 2006 There was a another demonstration by non-natives in Caledonia Friday night. However it was peaceful compared to one earlier in the week that saw a confrontation with police, and one arrest. Friday night's gathering involved an estimated 500 people who demanded an end to the Six Nations encampment on the site of a residential housing development.

Meanwhile, it was reported the provincial government has agreed to compensate the developer Henco.

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Native Peoples' Solidarity is Not Waning
Saskatoon Supporters of Six Nations - April 28,2006
Photo from Darlene Okemaysim

Darlene Okemaysim, Cree Nation passed on photos and information
from the Solidarity March and Rally in Saskatoon to support Six Nations people.

Photo from Darlene Okemaysim

"We ended up with alot of police escort on bikes, motorcycles, minivans, and police cars. Our route brought us by hundreds of vehicles during friday rush hour. It was quite peaceful and we were happy with the turn-out despite only 5 days rush on planning, pretty good I say!"



Photo from Darlene Okemaysim

Thank you to those speakers who we wanted to show respect & honor to the people from the Six nations territory who reside with us in Saskatchewan - Tamara Starblanket, Curtis Ahenakew, Colleen Thomas, Peter Garden, Ethel Ahenakew, Denis Hall, Trish Monture, Martin Cannon, Darlene Okemaysim, Maggie King, Teah from Shell Lake, Justin Monture, and others.



Photo from Darlene Okemaysim

in Peace...a Sister, Darlene Rose Okemaysim, Cree nation
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Land Rights are Human Rights!

Photo from Zainab Anadahy
Photo Courtesy of Zainab Anadahy

United Nations to Hear Six Nations Grievances

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org April 27, 2006

Land rights are human rights! Ignoring those rights is racial discrimination. That's not me saying it . . . the United Nations has stated it, and specifically related to Indigenous Peoples rights.

Doreen Silversmith, artist, freedom fighter, a Six Nations traditional woman - is on her way to Geneva, Switzerland to inform the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, of her peoples troubles in Caledonia, Ontario.

I have no doubt she will be welcomed there with respect and understanding. Rest assured the officials will listen carefully to her words, knowing they are sincere and bear witness to the human rights breaches by the Government of Canada.

We know this is true because of the recent historic determination by the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination in the treatment by the U.S. government of the Western Shoshone People. Just as Six Nations fights the good fight over land rights, they too have struggled to hold on to control over ancestral lands. Now, there is international support. It is likely Six Nations will benefit from their experience.

Here is what the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination said to the U.S. government, in its historic statement on Native Peoples land rights, "Freeze all efforts to privatize Western Shoshone ancestral lands for transfer to multinational extractive industries and energy developers - Desist from all activities planned and/or conducted on Western Shoshone ancestral lands".

Imagine how it would read, if we inserted Six Nations in place of Western Shoshone. We are hopeful the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights greets our sister Doreen Silversmith with the same enthusiasm as the Western Shoshone witnessed at the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.

University of British Columbia history professor Arthur Ray who is conducting intensive research on the subject, calls Aboriginal land claims, "Canada's biggest unresolved human rights issue".

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Photo from Kanehsatake

Standing together for a Common Cause - Support for Six Nations

Hundreds Gather in Solidarity in Vancouver, BC

Gladys Radek Wet su'wit'en Nation
Frog Clan
Vancouver Photos Courtesy of Gladys Radek

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

April 26, 2006

Negotiations are scheduled to resume today between Six Nations, provincial and federal officials. Meanwhile, Native Peoples solidarity with Six Nations land rights continues -

Gladys Radek Wet su'wit'en Nation
Frog Clan

There was a colourful, peaceful, vocal rally . . .
Gladys Radek Wet su'wit'en Nation
Frog Clan


and then a march along the downtown streets of Vancouver, as dozens of Aboriginal people and supporters paraded, and tied up traffic to the Lions Gate Bridge, to demonstrate their feelings about the protest at the Douglas Creek Estates in Caledonia, Ontario.
Gladys Radek Wet su'wit'en Nation
Frog Clan
Gladys Radek Wet su'wit'en Nation
Frog Clan

A report by Mohawk Nation News said more than 800 native and non-native people rallied in support of the Six Nations people in front of the Art Gallery in Vancouver, British Columbia, on Tuesday. A hereditary chief of the Squamish/Salish Nation, Ian Campbell, opened the rally. He spoke in Salish and explained, "Integrity means a lot to us. We think the Canadian government bureaucrats should learn our language so that they can speak the truth again".


Gladys Radek Wet su'wit'en Nation
Frog Clan
There was a rally, a march, singing, drumming and traditional dances.
Gladys Radek Wet su'wit'en Nation
Frog Clan

Then they marched with giant warrior flags, wearing red shirts and red arm bands to downtown Vancouver and then to Stanley Park. Several hundred walked onto the First Narrows/ Lions Gate Bridge and blocked it for a short time.

Gladys Radek Wet su'wit'en Nation
Frog Clan
They wanted to make a point.
Gladys Radek Wet su'wit'en Nation
Frog Clan

It was a big rally considering that it was organized within 2 days.
Gladys Radek Wet su'wit'en Nation
Frog Clan

Earlier in the day in Caledonia, tensions were sparked again at the protest site as a local official put her foot in her mouth when she talked about the hardship for non-natives and how they do not have a regular monthly pay cheque. Native protestors were outraged at the suggestion that seemed to speak of Indians on welfare.

Tempers had been raised already because of a mass rally by non-natives in Caledonia, some who showed up looking for trouble at the protest site. Police prevented them from getting too close to Natives, and one non-native youth was arrested in the Monday night action.

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Photo by Zainab
Photo Courtesy of Zainab Anadahy

April 25, 2006

"This is a time for all First Nations to stand together." With that key message in mind, the urban Aboriginal community in Vancouver, BC feels a strong attachment to the fight going on at Six Nations in Caledonia, Ontario. So much so, that a rally is planned today (Tuesday).

More than a hundred concerned members of the Vancouver Native community met at the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre on Saturday, to show solidarity with the Six Nations in Caledonia. Vice President of the United Native Nations David Dennis from the Nuu Chah Nulth stated, "As a collective, we decided that in order to ensure the safety for the Six Nations women, children and families, we will have a peaceful demonstration on Tuesday, April 25th, 2006 at 12:30 pm at the Vancouver Art Gallery. We will unite with our brothers and sisters all across Turtle Island".

Rally organizer Annita McPhee from the Tahltan Nation further stated, "We want to send a clear message to the federal and provincial governments that they must stop criminalizing our people who are standing up for our land and against injustices that been brought upon by the colonizers. Canada must stop using guns to resolve its disputes with the indigenous people."

This rally in Vancouver is intended to serve as a deterrence to prevent any further police escalation against the Six Nations. "We stand in support of the demands of the clan mothers for an immediate cessation of construction by Henco Industries on Six Nations territory which has never been surrendered and was formally recognized by the Crown as part of the 1784 Haldimand Deed and for peaceful resolution to the current standoff to be conducted on a nation-to-nation basis."

Click Here for More

Six Nations Clan Mothers and protestors at the land rights site near Caledonia, Ontario received direct assurances Monday from the Ontario Provincial Police that they have no intention of taking additional action against them. The OPP deputy commissioner met with them and delivered the assuring message. Meanwhile, local non-native residents planned a rally in Caledonia to demand more government efforts to end the standoff with Natives. The local mayor issued a statement calling for calm and peaceful words to prevail.

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Photo by Zainab
Photo Courtesy of Zainab Anadahy

Politics and the Six Nations Protest

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org
April 24, 2006

The latest political rhetoric related to Six Nations land rights includes, "The difficult situation in Caledonia is one that requires a certain amount of wisdom and forebearance", said the Minister of Indian Affairs Jim Prentice in the House of Commons.

He was responding to a question from the Member of Parliament for Nanaimo and Cowichan on Vancouver Island, Jean Crowder of the NDP. She asked if the Minister would agree to act on the recommendations of the Royal Commision on Aboriginal Peoples that was explicitly created to prevent another OKA-type situation from happening - recommendations that have been sitting there for years without any action.

Ignoring the question about the Royal Commission, "Good progress has been made over the last several days", stated the Indian Affairs Minister who met Monday morning with his provincial counterpart, David Ramsay. Minister Prentice explained the progress on the weekend with, "the agreement on the development of a work plan that will provide for an effective way to address and resolve the outstanding issues related to the Six Nations and the governance issues. We are hopeful that together we can achieve a peaceful resolution".

Then MP Crowder asked if the Indian Claims Commission will be "moved from under the thumb" of the department of Indian Affairs, "so its independence can be restored . . .with a full set of commissioners and the resources to get on with the job?".

In response, the Indian Affairs Minister skirted the specific question by playing the blame game, "Mr.Speaker it is worth noting that under the previous administration the number of specific claims in this country ballooned from approximately 300 to something approaching 850 specific claims requiring some analysis on our part".

Fascinating, I say by way of comment, when you consider Jim Prentice had served as a commissioner with the Indian Claims Commission and knows very well, that the system itself is to blame for the growing number of claims. He also knows that in fact, the Commission as well as the government departments are under-resourced and that is why there is such a backlog of specific claims, not just the hurdle of them being under the thumb of Indian Affairs. Truth be known, they are under the thumb of the Department of Justice that also fails to provide adequate resources to deal with specific claims.

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Click Here for More
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Is Military Using Hamilton in Six Nations Standoff?

Officials "not aware" of military involvement in Six Nations crisis, but won't deny reports
April 22, 2006 by Anthony Fenton and Dru Oja Jay, the Dominion

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Calm at the Protest Site - Progress in Official Talks

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

April 22, 2006

There has been a positive breakthrough in talks involving Six Nations representatives and the Ontario and federal governments. It seems to be an agreement on the process to create a better overall process that will assist all parties in trying to address the land rights dispute.

It was reported that a deal has been struck that creates a framework for a process to assist in negotiations. This milestone involves consensus to provide a meaningful mandate to their negotiators to come to the table in two weeks prepared to work on a draft agreement.

One of the most signifcant developments is that the Six Nations Confederacy is participating in these important talks. It truly is historic, in the sense of government-to-government relations between Six Nations and Canada. The Confederacy, and not the elected council that reports to Indian Affairs, represents the traditional Longhouse People, the Haudenosaunee known to many as the Iroquois Confederacy. Through the Clan Mothers, Chiefs, Sub-Chiefs and traditional protocols, they represent the sovereign Six Nations - the Mohawk, Seneca, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida and Tuscarora nations.

At the protest site near Caledonia, Six Nations members and supporters reported calm, with the police keeping their distance and promising not to act. However, the RCMP confirmed Friday they are now involved, and providing assistance to the Ontario Provincial Police.

Mohawks from Tyendinaga demonstrated their support for their Six Nations relations by bringing the biggest railway corridor to a standstill for most of Friday. But when they were informed negotiations were going well, they halted their action near Marysville, Ontario. CN Rail had gone to court and was successful in getting an injunction that could have seen police called in to enforce it.

Delegates attending the 31st annual convention of the Ontario Public Service Employees Union denounced the provincial government and the Ontario Provincial Police for last week?s pre-dawn raid on First Nations protestors at Caledonia. They passed a resolution condemning the government and the OPP and demanded negotiations to reach a peaceful resolution to the issues in the dispute.

OPSEU President Leah Casselman stated, "The government and the OPP have failed to learn the lessons of Ipperwash . . . Our governments must negotiate, not escalate". Since the issue was debated by OPSEU at their convention, negotiators on both sides agreed to appoint a principal representative and to develop within two weeks a detailed work plan and agreement that will provide for the implementation of constructive and effective ways to address and resolve the various outstanding issues.

In the meantime, protesters have indicated they will maintain barricades around a construction site at the heart of the controversy. They are occupying land they believe belongs to them under a grant dating back to 1784. The province says the land was surrendered in 1841 to build a highway. The protest began Feb. 28th.

Union support for Six Nations has been obvious for some time now. In fact, at the Caledonia protest site, the local Steelworkers Union flag was seen flying high with the Mohawk warriors flag, illustrating the solidarity with the First Nations people in their land rights struggle, that has been described by many observors as a human rights issue.

In Port Elgin, Ontario this weekend at a large gathering - the Canadian Auto Workers Council, more than 800 delegates from coast to coast, voted "to have governments remove police and find a peaceful solution to the dispute".

CAW president Buzz Hargrove urged Prime Minister Stephen Harper, "to ensure a responsible, peaceful and immediate end to the land claim dispute in Caledonia, Ontario".

Hargrove blasted Harper for escalating the overwhelming police presence in the dispute by having large numbers of RCMP officers dispatched to Caledonia.

"These actions have only served to inflame the peaceful actions of the native community who are defending their rights to reclaim their land," Hargrove states in an April 21 letter to Harper.

"Have the governments of the day not learned anything from the many previous disputes over native land claims? Peaceful negotiations, not police harassment and intimidation, is the way to proceed."

Hargrove called on the federal government to, " ensure all armed RCMP officers are withdrawn from the area immediately - stop issuing illegal possessions of land - set up a time-table for peaceful negotiations with the Six Nations people regarding their Caledonia land claim - set a fast track to work toward resolving all unsettled land claims in Canada".

"Historically the native community has been often discriminated against and no fair minded government should allow this shameful treatment of people to continue," Hargrove added. He also demanded that Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty remove the OPP presence and peacefully end the dispute immediately.

In British Columbia, the Secwepemc Native Youth Movement set up information pickets along the Trans Canada Highway at the Neskonlith Reserve, "to show solidarity with our Brothers and Sisters at Six Nations, near Caledonia, Ontario.

We have set up camp and posted billboards, banners and Warrior flags to get the message out to the 10,000+ travellers per day that drive this highway. The billboards read -Stop OPP Terrorism . . . OPP out of SIX NATIONS . . . This land is all Indian Land. We have a common struggle with our Brothers and Sisters at Six Nations - we never surrendered our land to anyone. We claim jurisdiction throughout our whole territory".

Photo by Zainab
Photo Courtesy of Zainab Anadahy

The Six Nations protest in Ontario is about land rights. Some label it civil disobedience. Call it what you like, but it is obvious such action has become a necessary part of Aboriginal life in Canada.

To some degree, it is a successful tactic. Following Oka in 1990, there was an awakening. The federal and some provincial governments, scrambled to address Native issues - land claims, self-government and modern-day treaties. Although there was some progress, unfortunately a form of sleeping sickness invaded the bureaucracies. There was some subsequent slumbering, and due to political pendulum swinging, the engine of change stalled.

Supreme Court decisions sparked new awakenings. Still, governments or perhaps their civil servants, were not quick-studies and even today are trying to comprehend and accomodate, the realities of a new Aboriginal Canada.

Peaceful protests such as those at Six Nations are a necessary good - a means of ensuring governments and their charges are not caught snoozing. After all, nobody wants another Oka or Ipperwash!

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Solidarity With Six Nations Protestors
Click Here for More

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

April 21, 2006

Mohawks of Akwesasne, Kahnesetake, Tyendinaga showed their support for the Six Nations lands rights protest, by staging their own public protests.The most dramatic was near Belleville, Ontario as Tyendinaga Mohawks and supporters blocked the Canadian National Railway line, prompting CN Rail to go to court to get an injunction, and succeeding. However, rail service along the main train transit line between Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal was severely disrupted.

A company news release stated, "CN has obtained an injunction from the Ontario Superior Court, ordering First Nations members currently obstructing CN?s main line between Montreal and Toronto at a site near Marysville, Ontario, to remove their blockade. CN had requested the injunction on the basis that this rail line is an essential link in CN?s transcontinental network, whose unobstructed operation is essential to CN?s freight customers across North America, as well as to the travelling public using VIA passenger rail services. CN is in no way involved with the dispute involving First Nations near Caledonia, Ontario that apparently triggered this illegal action at Marysville, two hundred miles distant from the Caledonia controversy, and should not be expected to suffer any harm due to a matter with which it has no involvement or interest whatsoever. Although CN favours a peaceful resolution to this matter, it will take all measures open to it under the law to protect its right to operate its rail service without obstruction or hindrance."

Canadian Press reported that near the Canada-U.S. border crossing at Cornwall, Ontario - Mohawk protestors from Akwesasne paraded with protest signs, soliciting support from passing motorists.

In British Columbia, the United Native Nations representing urban Aboriginals issued a statement in support of Six Nations. The UNN insisted the Federal Government negotiate with the leaders of Six Nations on a Nation-to-Nation basis to defuse the situation at Caledonia, Ontario.

A former leader of the West Coast Warriors, David Dennis Vice- President of United Native Nations said, "I have seen first-hand in 2001 at Burnt Church, New Brunswick, the violence put upon our people by the Government of Canada . . . We call for the safety for the Six Nations women, children and families. We as Indian people will go to ANY measures to ensure their safety. We will hold this government accountable for any expenditure through the RCMP that results in any harm done to the people of Six Nations . . . There are over 90,000 urban aboriginals in the greater Vancouver Area. The frustration of our impoverished situations may come to a boiling point should the Six Nations situation be resolved in a heavy-handed manner . . . We call for peace and calm. The Federal Government and Prime Minister Harper must act honourably and consult all leadership within Six Nations to prevent any further incursions".

Earlier this week, the First Nations Leadership Council in BC called on the police to "stand down", and urged the Prime Minister and Premier of Ontario to take immediate action "to begin to defuse this tense situation".

"Canada Out of Six Nations". "No Development on Stolen Land". "Henco Out of Six Nations". "It?s Time to Decolonise". "Canada/O.P.P. Respect Rotinoshonni Soveriegnty". Those protest signs illustrated how support is growing for Six Nations land rights and their protest in Ontario.

Solidarity with Six Nations was seen on the streets of Montreal. A demonstration to denounce the Ontario Provincial Police attack on Indigenous protesters defending their land at Six Nations, attracted several dozen supporters. The demonstration, which was called with just a few hours notice, gathered at Cabot Park in downtown Montreal.

After speeches by Misty and Tania, two local indigenous solidarity activists, the demonstration marched along Ste-Catherine Street. Protesters chanted, "Indigenous rights under attack, what do we do? Stand up and fight back . . . Land, freedom, self-determination, Canada is an illegal nation!" and,in French, "Fin de l?occupation, respectez les Six Nations!"

Members of the Indigenous Peoples Solidarity and allied groups promised to,"continue to raise awareness and mobilize to show support and solidarity with the indigenous resistance at Six Nations".

Mohawk flags were seen flying high above the roadway on the Mercier Bridge, where Mohawk Peacekeepers staged a protest to support their relations at Six Nations. Thursday morning traffic on the bridge was halted for about fifteen minutes.

Hazel Hill of Six Nations, was one of the people who came face to face with the police Thursday morning at the protest site. These are her words.

When the Police Came
Interview With Hazel Hill

Audio - MP3 file

"Hey to all of our friends and allies from Grand River Territory.

We upheld the law and we're standing proud. this morning (Thursday) 15 people were arrested when the police moved in about 4:30 am. they had pepper sprayed some of the men and women, and forcibly removed our people from the site, including some of the non-native supporters that have been on the site with us, some for weeks.

My husband and I weren't on the site at the time, but one of the women from the camp came and told us that the police had moved in and so we immediately headed back down. The people had congregated at the back gate and when we arrived on the scene there were police around each corner of our lands, probably about 200 total. The people were still on the lands and had never completely left. We continued to gather and the numbers continued to grow. The people continued to tell the police to leave, women & men elders & youth, we stood together in unity. When the police continued to resist our peaceful request to leave our territory, the Caledonia by-pass was closed down, trafffic was backing up in both directions, and only then did they realize that our people were not small in numbers, and perhaps they had underestimated the support that we did have.

We had hundreds of Six Nations people gathered at the site within the hour, and had the police surrounded at the back gate; and finally, the police agreed to withdraw. we marched them off of the back gate, many women linking arms together walking the police off our land followed by the rest, we then went to the corner gate, again, marching them off of the lands.

The police continued to file out of the lands onto hwy 6 in front of the disputed land area. the people then gathered to the front gate and continued to uphold our Kaierenekowah, removing the police from the site. I attended toward the back of the property to inform the remaining officers on site that they were pulling out and asked them to leave.

A female officer informed me that I was in violation of a court injunction and that if I didn't leave the property I would be arrested. I informed her that SHE was in violation of the Supreme Law of the Land, our Kairenekowah, and in violation of international law and that she should leave.

I again informed them that their officers were leaving the site and that they should leave. She again told me that if I didn't leave that I would be arrested, I told her again that she should leave, at which point she said, that's it mam your under arrest and tried to grab ahold of me. She was unable to get me down, at which point about 4 other male officers came to her assistance wrestling me to the ground.

I had hollered for help and at that point several of our people had headed in my direction, they began to knee or kick me in my left thigh, I did try to defend myself and at one point kicked an officer square in the chest to get him away from me (sorry to my friends who asked me not to fight, but my instincts kicked in and my reaction was immediate to defend myself) my eldest son tried to pull the police off of me and he was shot in the back with a tazer gun, but as soon as several others arrived on the scence, the police immediately withdrew off of me, people helped me and my son over to a vehicle where they pulled the darts out of his back. The police then got into their vehicles and on their way out I seen the female officer in the middle of the van with a big gun in her hands obviously ready to use it.

Everyone followed their vans to the front gate and the people walked the opp straight down argyle street south of the main gate and when they were far enough away, we pulled in a transport truck and shut the road down. We then blocked the road just north of the 6th line leading into our community.

The OPP have been continuosly reporting that they did not use any weapons other than pepper spray, that our people were armed etc., but when they moved in, the people were resting, some of them awakened from sleep and told to move out. We maintain that we did not break the Peace, the opp crossed the line and came into our lands fully packed with guns and other weapons with the intent to use them.

The situation was very tense but as I have told many many reporters today during interviews, "we upheld the Law that the Creator gave to us and are standing strong in front of Creation, honouring our Creator, our responsiblities according to the Kaierenekowah and Our Spirits and our hearts swelled with Pride.

We continue to keep the Peace, we have many supporters from many territories coming in to our aid and we want to send a Big NyaWeh to all of you, who, while you might not be here physically, all of the efforts through e-mails, letters etc., the food and other donations that you have been bringing in have touched our hearts tremendously, and through your support, you have helped in keeping that spirit alive and in the forefront. will talk to you soon. Our prayers are with all of you tonight as well."

Hazel.


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Teens Tasered - Woman Beaten
O.P.P. Stormed Six Nations Protest Site Near Caledonia

Support Grows for Six Nations Land Rights

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

April 20, 2006

It got worse not better, after the Ontario Provincial Police raided a Six Nations protest site, armed with M16's, using tear gas on women, and tasers on teenagers.

Sixteen people were arrested. But rather than end the protest, it only served to fuel a volatile situation and sparked solidarity action. Dozens of people arrived at the Douglas Creek Estates protest site, a short while after the police raid. More continued to arrive throughout the day.

Political support from Native leaders also grew. Assembly of First Nations Nations Chief Phil Fontaine noted that the police action only made matters worse and reminded Canadians there are more than a thousand outstanding land claims across the country, and they need to be addressed. In British Columbia, the First Nations Leadership Council issued a statement, calling for the police to "stand down".

Grand Chief Ed John, of the First Nations Summit stated, "We call for the immediate intervention of both Prime Minister Harper and Premier McGuinty to begin to defuse this tense situation . . . What is needed, rather than a hands-off approach, is their respect, recognition and their efforts to begin to reconcile the conflicting interests involved". Assembly of First Nations, BC Regional Chief Shawn Atleo stated, "What is readily apparent is how similar this crisis is developing compared to Oka in 1990 and Ipperwash in 1995. Underlying all of these situations are unresolved land issues of the Mohawk Nation which is not so dissimilar to situations here in British Columbia".

Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of BC Indian Chiefs added, "If there is any hope of avoiding escalation, both Harper and McGuinty must support a 30 day cooling-off period. An immediate moratorium on further construction on the site must also be put in place. Most importantly, the court injunction and court orders must be temporarily stayed in order that the Ontario Provincial Police may stand down".

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Raid on Six Naions Protestors Included Use of Tear Gas and Tasers

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

April 20, 2006

"Youths were dragged from their tents . . . one woman was beaten by five police officers."

Janie Jamieson, a spokesperson for the people told reporters that police brutality was witnessed. Several people were reported injured and sixteen arrests were made when the Ontario Provincial Police stormed the Six Nations protest site near Caledonia.

Mohawk Nation News reported, "At 5:55 am this morning over 150 heavily armed Ontario Provincial Police . . . invaded Six Nations land. Some carrying M-16s, in riot gear . . . Tear gas has been thrown at them. Some were pepper sprayed."

The pre-dawn raid sparked confrontation and now has spawned greater resolve by protestors to stay put, and has created greater support. Hours after the police action, hundreds of people were reported to have gathered at the site after the police raid. Tire fires were set as part of road blockades, as protestors re-established their presence at Douglas Creek Estates, a residential development project being built on Indian land.

"We used the least amount of force possible," said Provincial police officials who claimed they used restraint, but had to use force during the arrests because of the "behaviour" of some of the protestors. Later, they said several policemen were injured by protestors. One officer suffered injuries "after being struck by a bag of rocks". The police have established a "perimeter" around the protest site to contain the situation. Police officials claim their "focus is on public safety".

When the police raided the protest site they said they were greeted by some protestors with clubs, axes and other weapons that were seen, but not guns. A CBC reporter toured the protest site and confirmed there were no weapons visible to her.

According to reports from the protestors, the OPP pepper sprayed them and the people started fighting back. Despite the use of tear gas and tasers and their threatening presence with M16s, "The people moved the police off the land". They walked backwards off the territory, explained Janie Jamieson.

The protestors are unarmed but they are protecting themselves in a traditional way, "The Six Nations people have been burning tobacco during this entire occupation for their protection. This is the only weapon that we have. We know the truth is on our side. We are calling upon the natural forces to give us wisdom and guidance through this whole siege. There are repercussions to those involved when you go against people who are innocent and justified in what they are doing".

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Home On Native Land
OCAP PHOTO

(Photo Courtesy of OCAP)
The people of Six Nations are repossessing their land
April 19, 2006
by Hillary Bain Lindsay, The Dominion

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Kahnawake Mohawk Peacekeepers Illustrate Support for Protestors
April 20, 2006

For Immediate Release

Mohawk Nation at Kahnawake - (Onerahtóhkha/April 20, 2006)

On April 18th, 2006, the Haudenosaunee Confederacy Council at Grand River announced that the Governments of Canada and Ontario have pulled out of talks concerning the recent land repossession at Caledonia, ON.

With talks abruptly ending in this manner, it became apparent that the Government of Canada was not interested in seeking a peaceful resolve to this issue and have elected a violent imposition of their will.

At approximately 4:30am, the Ontario Provincial Police launched a violent attack upon occupants of the repossessed Haudenosaunee territory at Caledonia. The occupants there were unarmed and peaceful. Upon learning of this violent attack, the Rotisken'rakéhte of Kahnawake mobilized to discuss security measures to prevent any further violence in Caledonia and Grand River.

It was resolved that the Rotisken'rakéhte at Kahnawake shall establish defensive vigils at each entry point within our territory in support of our brothers and sisters at Caledonia. We wish to make clear that this is strictly a defensive measure to ensure that no further violence is initiated by the Governments of Canada and Ontario upon our people.

The Rotisken'rakéhte at Kahnawake urge the Governments of Canada and Ontario to stop any further plans to invade our territories. Furthermore, we insist on the Government of Canada to return to talks with the Haudenosaunee Confederacy Council to resolve this issue in a peaceful manner.

For more information, please contact the Mohawk Nation Office; Secretariat for the People of the Longhouse at 450.632.7639.

Men's Council Fire
Kahnawake Branch of the Mohawk Nation
Six Nation Iroquois Confederacy


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Six Nations Talks Collapsed . . .?
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News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

April 19, 2006

History, Politics and the Police are playing out once again in a scary scene that is all too familiar to Indians and Canadians.

1990 was the year of the Oka conflict over Mohawk land rights. 1995 was when land rights sparked a showdown at Ipperwash in Ontario, and another at Gustafson Lake in BC.

Context is important when comprehending all the factors behind the rising tension related to the land rights protest by Six Nations members and supporters, at a non-aboriginal housing development near Caledonia, Ontario.

Much is on the minds and tongues of the Indians, whose oral traditions bind them close to their history and how the people have been treated. In 1924 Canada sent in the RCMP to violently depose the legitimate Confederacy council of Six Nations. It is understandable if that piece of history is rearing its ugly head, as the Ontario Provincial Police who killed an unarmed Dudley George at Ipperwash, have prepared to raid the protest site - a raid that is imminent. The 1924 armed invasion of Six Nations territory was a military operation ordered by the Canadian government, using the RCMP - it was seen clearly as a declaration of war. It has never been forgotten by the Indians.

Mohawk observors suggest the OPP coming onto their Haldimand Tract territory is a declaration of war again. "Under our law, the Kaianereh?ko:wa / the Great Law, we have every right to defend our men, women and children by any means necessary," is what is on the minds of the warriors - women and men alike.

This is a righteous gathering of the people at the Douglas Creek Estates - a housing development on Six Nations land.

If the people are arrested, and the construction allowed to continue, it will be another black chapter of history built in Canada, on land of broken promises.

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Photo by Zainab

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

April 18, 2006

The traditional and elected political forces at Six Nations made remarkable progress, in their efforts to address land rights issues, particularly a protest at the Douglas Creek Estates near Caledonia, but it seems an Indian Affairs agenda has been exposed - Let the police resolve the protest situation in Ontario and then the lawyers can get back to bickering.

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Kahentinetha Horn of Mohawk Nation News has stayed on top of this story for the past fifty days.

She reported, "At 2:00 pm, on Tuesday, April 18th, the Six Nations Iroquois Confederacy, Onondaga Longhouse, stated Canada absolutely refuses to address the land issue with Confederacy chiefs . . .

The Confederacy has proposed a peaceful lawful resolution . . . On Sunday, April 16th at a people?s meeting the Confederacy and the band council agreed to work together and let the Confederacy chiefs and clan mothers deal with the land issue . . .

Obviously what?s happening now was Canada and Ontario?s intention all along. They do not want the Confederacy to deal with the land issue . . . They do not want to come to a peaceful agreement with the Six Nations on the illegal building of non-native housing on their land and the many other land issues that plague Six Nations people . . .

There is an iron clad promise under the Haldimand Agreement from the Crown to protect Six Nations people from encroachment. This has been violated for over 200 years. Canada and Ontario prefer to back Henco, an American corporation. They do not want the Indians to get anything . . . Canada is ready to create a situation where there will be a bloody confrontation between the police and the Indians . . .

We need people to head over there with video cameras and other cameras to take pictures. That isn?t threatening, is it? If the OPP behave correctly and not evict people from their own land, then there will be nothing to hide . . .

If Canada and Ontario are allowed to expropriate Six Nations for private American corporations, where will it stop? Predators are waiting to come in and take over the 20,000 acres that the Six Nations people are living on right now. Land values in this area are skyrocketing because of the influx of immigrants from all over the world. We Rotino?shon:ni are in the way of so-called 'progress'.

The Haldimand Deed guaranteed that there would never be any encroachment on our land ever! In 5 years it is foreseen that cities on the Haldimand Tract will more than double their population. To allow this, the federal government is relinquishing its trust responsibility that it would always protect the Rotinol?shon:ni /Iroquois from any encroachment whatsoever".

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Photo by Zainab

BACKGROUND

MNN. Tuesday, April 18th, 2006. 3:15 pm.

At 2:00 pm, on Tuesday, April 18th, the Six Nations Iroquois Confederacy, Onondaga Longhouse, stated Canada absolutely refuses to address the land issue with Confederacy chiefs. It is a 200 year old outstanding land claim of the Six Nations. This is the 50th day of the standoff. Protesters have stopped Henco Industries from building an illegal housing development on their land.

The Confederacy has proposed a peaceful lawful resolution.

Canada only wants to deal with the Indian Act band council they illegally enforced on the territory. In 1924 Canada sent in the RCMP to violently depose the legitimate Confederacy council. They seem to be planning the same tactics again. The 1924 armed invasion was a military coup implemented by the Canadian government using the RCMP. They say it was a declaration of war. The OPP coming onto our territory is a declaration of war again. Under our law, the Kaianereh?ko:wa/Great Law, we have every right to defend our men, women and children by any means necessary.

Henco is taking the OPP to court tomorrow for not enforcing the illegal injunction. Henco seems to think that private companies can order the OPP around like an army of private mercenaries. The OPP are allegedly going after the protesters before the court hearing and have sent a message to the protesters, ?You only have hours left?. Two paddy wagons are already parked nearby and the OPP cruisers are driving up and down Highway 6, all ?swat teamed up?.

On Sunday, April 16th at a people?s meeting the Confederacy and the band council agreed to work together and let the Confederacy chiefs and clan mothers deal with the land issue. Legally they are the only ones who can as Canada and their band councils are recent creations. Only councilor Dave General refused to go along with the people. He read out Canada and Ontario?s position against what the people wanted. He wants a ?poll? to be conducted which he and his masters can control. If this happens, we want impartial international observers to make sure it is legal. Otherwise it?s just a rubber stamp for the establishment.

Obviously what?s happening now was Canada and Ontario?s intention all along. They do not want the Confederacy to deal with the land issue. Canada is clearly in default. They do not want to come to a peaceful agreement with the Six Nations on the illegal building of non-native housing on their land and the many other land issues that plague Six Nations people. Canada is caught. There is an iron clad promise under the Haldimand Agreement from the Crown to protect Six Nations people from encroachment. This has been violated for over 200 years. Canada and Ontario prefer to back Henco, an American corporation. They do not want the Indians to get anything.

Canada is ready to create a situation where there will be a bloody confrontation between the police and the Indians. Things could get out of hand. Nobody will know about it because the media blackout already in place will be continued. At the same time many friends and allies of the Six Nations are being targeted. The Indians are always ready to talk peace and negotiate.

We need people to head over there with video cameras and other cameras to take pictures. That isn?t threatening, is it? If the OPP behave correctly and not evict people from their own land, then there will be nothing to hide.

If Canada and Ontario are allowed to expropriate Six Nations for private American corporations, where will it stop? Predators are waiting to come in and take over the 20,000 acres that the Six Nations people are living on right now. Land values in this area are skyrocketing because of the influx of immigrants from all over the world. We Rotino?shon:ni are in the way of so-called ?progress?. The Haldimand Deed guaranteed that there would never be any encroachment on our land ever!

In 5 years it is foreseen that cities on the Haldimand Tract will more than double their population. To allow this, the federal government is relinquishing its trust responsibility that it would always protect the Rotinol?shon:ni/Iroquois from any encroachment whatsoever. Beware! The federal government is not credible as they are not willing to uphold this solemn promise.

Call Dick Hill at 519-865-7722; Jacqueline House at 905-765-9316; Hazel at 519-445-1351;

Kahentinetha Horn
MNN Mohawk Nation News Kahentinetha2@yahoo.com

Photo by Zainab

Land rights breakthrough or hidden agenda at Six Nations
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Land rights issue may be put to a vote at Six Nations
Questions raised about the validity of the voting rules . . .

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org
April 17, 2006

A significant breakthrough is reported at Six Nations where the elected government voted in favour of having the traditional Confederacy handle the land rights dispute at the site of the Douglas Creek Estates near Caledonia, Ontario.

It has been suggested a community vote be held to determine a land rights action plan. However, concerns are raised about the voting rules and a hidden agenda.

Kahentinetha Horn of Mohawk Nation News reported, "At the Sunday April 16th emergency meeting (an emergency for Canada), the band council voted 7 to 6 in favor of turning land matters over to the Rotino?shon:ni Confederacy.

In other words, we?d like to see them keep the same standards of excellence that they had back in the 1920?s. Council meetings were open to the public and were fully recorded so that the public had a better understanding of the Six Nations people . . . The band council decision to hand matters concerning land over to the traditional Confederacy council that Canada violently deposed in 1924 is a political breakthrough . . . The band councilors? move reflects the attempt by the Six Nations people to express their will, in terms that Canada must accept. Canada and Ontario were told to honor our wishes."

Kahentinetha Horn reported that elected chief Dave General did not vote in favor of this resolution. "Instead he read out his, Canada and Ontario?s schemes on how to resolve the occupation. They want an extension to the current Douglas Creek Estates? injunction to May 24th 2006 . . . They want a poll to be conducted of all members 18 years of age and older on whom should oversee the land issue. Will it be the traditional Confederacy, the band council or a jointly appointed committee? The band council is supporting the Confederacy and Dave General is still pushing the colonial agenda. Hey, Dave, whose payroll are you on anyway?"

According to the Mohawk Nation News report, the idea is to send a notice out to Six Nations community members on April 19th. They want the poll to take place on May 22nd. "We are very suspicious of voting in any polls or election run by his colonial master. We have our own way of making decisions which includes all people of all ages according to the Kaianereh?ko:wa."

The concern of the Traditionals is that only a small number, perhaps only 3 percent will participate in this vote, and the most likely voters will be those who support the elected band council.

"There are 22,000 members of the Six Nations community. A legitimate poll should have at least 13,000 to 14,000 people voting. Only 500 people voting would be completely illegal according to international law. A valid poll would sanction the traditional chiefs to speak on our behalf. There has to be complete disclosure and fully informed consent of a majority of the people. Otherwise it would be the decision of a small group of elitists who are likely pawns of the outside interests."

The vote will be run by Indian Affairs. To be fair and legal, it should be run by the United Nations.

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Photo by Zainab

BACKGROUND
Our jurisdictional position with respect to the land at Grand River.

I would be glad to share any information with you regarding our situation as it is indeed a most important one. As a basis for catch up, the women of the community, supported by our Clanmothers and men have held our position on unceded territory within the haldimand tract near the vacinity of what is now known as Caledonia.

The position of our people has been simple, we own the land, and the women as titleholders, have a responsibility according to our law, the Kaierenekowah, to protect that land as a mother to a child.

The Confederacy chiefs, who at one point, because of the court injunction had pulled their support from the people, have once again supported the efforts of the people and are working toward helping the people in their position. The federal government, provincial government, elected band council, OPP, Haldimand county, the developers and our traditional government have had a couple of meetings. The first two were basically a "show" in an attempt to appear that they are operating in good faith, but reality is, they did not even consider the position of the confederacy and paid attention only to what the elective system has said.

In a turn of events, a special meeting was called for those same people, at which time the elective system voted 7 out of the 12 to have the government respect the Confederacy council , and that lands deals would be handled with our Confederacy. No answer from the feds whether this is even being considered. Band councillor Dave General wants the OPP to come in and remove the "radicals" from the site, and continue negotiations with lands claims with his so called governemnt.

The people, and the Clanmothers and chiefs continue to remind all of those on the side of canada, including the elective band council, that they have no say over our lands and that the treaties were made with the Confederacy people not the elective system and that by rights, the band council and the governemnt of canada are both sitting on the same side of the negotiating table. The people re-affirmed today at a meeting, and consesus was reached that we will not move from these lands; in a nutshell, that is it. If you have specific questions, please fell free to e-mail me, or call my cell (519)865-7723, or work (519)445-0719

Thanks for the support!
Hazel E. Hill
thebasketcase@on.aibn.com

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Keeping Their Eyes on the Ball
Six Nations Youth at Site of Douglas Creek Estates - Land Rights Protest
Photo by Zainab
Photo by Zainab

EXPLORATION RESOLUTION PROGRESS
JOINT STATEMENT OF CANADA, ONTARIO AND SIX NATIONS
APRIL 5, 2006
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Six Nations of the Grand River, Canada and Ontario are pleased to report on the successful progress of an exploratory resolution process begun in 2004, and on their agreement to continue to discuss whether settlement is possible of any or all of the claims raised in litigation by Six Nations of the Grand River. These claims seek an accounting and damages with respect to over 200 years of history and transactions. While Canada and Ontario have different views with respect to their roles and responsibilities, the parties agree that resolution of the claims of Canada?s largest First Nation and the fostering of a respectful and mutually beneficial relationship, and reconciliation, is best achieved through dialogue and negotiation. While this without prejudice resolution process is ongoing, the parties have agreed to an abeyance of the litigation.

After a series of discussions and proposals it was agreed that the exploration teams would examine two of Six Nations claims in which minimal additional historical research was required. The exploration teams chose to examine the Port Maitland and Jarvis claims with a view to first agreeing to a factual narrative of each claim. The teams reached agreement on the narratives in December 2005 and Six Nations Council approved proceeding with the resolution discussions. The parties agreed to continue discussions on the Jarvis and Port Maitland claims.

The exploration teams hope that these first steps will result in a process that can deal with and ultimately resolve the litigation to the satisfaction of all parties. It is also hoped that this process will shorten the timeframe for the ultimate resolution of the litigation.

In our view, the resolution of these claims through dialogue and negotiation will assist in fostering a harmonious and mutually advantageous relationship among Six Nations, Ontario and Canada.

BACKGROUNDER ON THE CLAIMS OF THE SIX NATIONS OF THE GRAND RIVER BAND OF INDIANS
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In March 1995, the Six Nations of the Grand River Band of Indians filed a lawsuit against the Government of Canada and the Province of Ontario. The lawsuit involves allegations of breaches of fiduciary duty in the administration of Six Nations lands and assets, most of which are based on events that took place before Confederation. In other words, the Six Nations claims focus on how land and money were managed, rather than questioning ownership and/or a return of lands.

Specifically, the Six Nations give fourteen examples of claims, or allegations, which they are attempting to prove against Canada and/or Ontario, including:

the Crown did not give the Six Nations all the land promised in the Haldimand Proclamation;

the Crown patented land in the tract known as ?Block 5? (part of Moulton Township) without having received a valid surrender;

the Crown patented land in the tract known as ?Block 6? (part of Canborough Township) without having received a valid surrender;

William Claus, a Crown agent, misappropriated monies belonging to the Six Nations and the Crown did not properly secure reimbursement;

the Crown did not compensate the Six Nations for land flooded during the construction of the Welland Canal;

the Crown speculatively invested the Six Nations? trust monies in the Grand River Navigation Company;

the Six Nations did not receive appropriate compensation for 368 7/10 acres patented to the Grand River Navigation Company;

the Six Nations did not receive adequate compensation for the lands surrendered for sale in the Town (now City) of Brantford;

the Crown patented Six Nations land adjoining the Talbot Road in lot sizes not approved by the Six Nations;

the Crown improperly patented Six Nations land adjoining the Hamilton Port Dover Plank Road that the Six Nations wanted leased;

the Crown did not properly compensate the Six Nations for land taken at Port Maitland;

the Crown did not secure a valid surrender of the Six Nations? interest in the lands on the Grand River in 1841 and that the current reserve does not contain all the land set aside in the Order-in-Council of October 4, 1843;

Samuel Jarvis, an agent of the Crown, could not account for all the Six Nations? money with which he had been entrusted;

the Six Nations did not receive proper compensation for the exploitation of oil and gas under their reserve.

As outlined in its Statement of Defence, the Government of Canada?s position is that the Six Nations validly surrendered all the lands that are not now part of the reserve; that the Six Nations received full and fair compensation for the lands they surrendered; and, that if there is any liability, the liability related to breaches that pre-date Confederation rests with the Province of Ontario.

In 1999, 2000 and 2001, all three Parties ? the Six Nations, the Province of Ontario and the Government of Canada ? turned from active litigation and towards talks to find common ground upon which to proceed with some form of out-of-court resolution. Since 2004, the Government of Canada has been in exploratory discussions with the Six Nations? elected Chief and Council and the Province of Ontario to address the claims.

This timeline reflects the tremendous complexity of the factual issues that must be addressed. There are already more than 70,000 pages of material dating from the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. A full response to the Six Nations? allegations requires a comprehensive social, political, legal and economic history of southwestern Ontario from 1784 to the present.

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Peaceful protestors await arrest . . .

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

March 30th, 2006

Jason Harris was returning to Six Nations from a protest site near Caledonia, when he was killed in a car accident. The incident cast a shadow of grief over the gathering of land rights protestors at the Douglas Creek Estates development. Harris was one of the first to launch the protest against the residential development on Indian land.

Meanwhile, the effort made by Indian Affairs to intervene, fell apart when Haudenosaunee Clan Mothers dismissed the appointment of Michael Coyle who was named as a fact finder. The one fact he found very quickly when he met with them, was that he was not welcome and was told to leave.

The protestors did not leave as a judge told them to do more than a week ago, and the police have not enforced a court ordered eviction . . . yet.

However, the Sheriff of Haldimand County showed up at the site to read a court order that had been revised, to include the threat of fingerprinting and being photographed, if they do not leave and are arrested for criminal contempt of a court order.

Provincial police now have the authority to arrest the protesters but have not said when they will do it.

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Confederacy Chiefs Support Protestors
Call for Talks on Land Claims

March 28, 2006
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Photo by Zainab

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org
March 26, 2006

Stolen Lands and More Than Two Centuries of Injustice . . .

The Haudenosaunee know what is right and what is wrong. The well known Iroquois Two Row Wampum said it all, symbolically - two canoes travelling down the river parallel, never crossing or interfering. But canoes got swamped by so much interference - traditions got all messed up over the centuries of colonial oppression.

Frustration cloaked-in-anger, that spawned grassroots action in February. Followed by court action from a 'foreign' government. Police action is waiting in the wings. Now, the Department of Indian Affairs has appointed a professor as a fact finder, regarding matters involving the disputed Douglas Creek Estates / Indian lands near Caledonia, Ontario.

Six Nations protestors, representing themselves and basic community interests, and not the elected Band Council, continue to occupy the site of a residential development, despite the nearby presence of police who are preparing to enforce a court order. The court-ordered deadline for the protestors to leave or else be arrested, passed at 2pm last Wednesday.

The Minister of Indian Affairs announced Friday he has appointed Professor Michael Coyle, "to better understand the issues and to promote a peaceful resolution of the situation".

Coyle was not appointed to mediate, because the rules of mediation are clear - both parties get to choose who mediates. However, the University of Western Ontario professor received a mandate to - investigate the nature of the grievances - identify the jurisdictional implications - and, explore the possibility for mediation.

Coyle has previously served as a Director with the Indian Commission of Ontario ( now only a memory ), and his mediation background includes experience in First Nations land claims. He currently teaches negotiations and mediation at the University of Western Ontario in London and serves as the University?s Director of Dispute Resolution Services.

An Indian Affairs news release explained that the federal and provincial governments have been dealing with the Six Nations land claims issues. How? Lawyers for all parties meet regularly for discussions, something they have been doing since 2004. That was when court action was suspended in favour of talks.

Has it been a useful process? According to Indian Affairs, yes!

"Progress is being made. As of March 15, 2006, for example, agreement had been reached on a factual narrative of the Port Maitland and Jarvis elements of the claim and all three parties have agreed to proceed with exploratory resolution discussions on these elements."

The difficulty Mr. Coyle faces, is that the protestors are not aligned with the elected Six Nations government. They are supported by the Longhouse Clan Mothers who do not recognize the Indian Affairs, colonial-imposed way of doing business through an elected council.

As for fact finding? The basics are already obvious. Poverty and its many terrible tentacles. Disrespect for the true traditions and culture of the Onkwe?hon:we - the People. A divided community. Nepotism. Lack of accountability, transparency, and communication between community leaders and the people. Distrust of INAC's puppet governments. Six Nations lands were used by outsiders for years. The land claims process has not served the Six Nations people well. While millions of dollars were spent setting up research and negotiations infrastructure, no real headway was made. The land claims staff were sent home, the office gathered dust, and the lawyers took over completely by launching court action which now is on hold.

Meanwhile, the land still belongs to Six Nations, but as is the case in many places across Canada, others are developing the lands for their own benefit, while governments repeatedly stretch the meaning of the word progress - for public relations purposes.

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News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org
March 23, 2006

Six Nations Clan Mothers moved out of their behind-the-scenes role, to the frontlines of the protest on disputed land near Caledonia, Ontario. They are there amidst a construction site of a Henco Industries residential development, on land the protestors explained was legally designated as Indian land in the 1700s through an agreement called the Haldimand Tract.

Henco officials labelled the protestors as a splinter group, and said that the Six Nations Council never complained to the developer.

However, this gathering is not about the elected council, it is a grassroots demonstration with support of the traditional longhouse people. In fact, the statement issued Wednesday provided perspective on the whose who behind this protest, "we the clan mothers command the agents, representatives and officers of the said British corporation to be at peace and refrain from any acts of violence to spill blood or interfere with the rights of the Onkwe?hon:we".

Several hundred supporters were on hand for an expected showdown with police. However, the 2pm court-ordered deadline for the protestors to leave, arrived without incident, although the police were nearby.

Today they are looking for an opportunity to enforce the court order by arresting the protestors on charges of Criminal and Civil Contempt. The charges flow from the court decision to grant an injunction, and subsequent enforcement order issued by a Superior Court judge, who ironically owns land within the disputed area.

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News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

March 18, 2006

Walk away, or you will be arrested. The choice is one that faces a handful of Six Nations members and their supporters, after Superior Court Justice David Marshall issued his ruling on Criminal Contempt charges.

The protestors, who have occupied the site of a residential development outside Caledonia, Ontario since last month, were given until this coming Wednesday to leave . . . or else. The ultimatum by the judge was simple, "You won?t be arrested unless you want to", were his words spoken for the benefit of all to hear, but specifically Dawn Smith, a champion for Six Nation?s land rights, and one of the leaders of the protest at the Douglas Creek Estates development.

There has been a number of noteworthy legal twists and turns, on the path to the court?s latest decision. An injuncton was granted as requested by the developer, Henco Industries. But the Ontario Provincial Police were unable to enforce it until the judge specifically ruled on the Criminal Contempt charges. Now the police can move in, as of 2pm Wednesday.

It is somewhat bizarre that the judge owns property within the disputed area that Six Nations maintains it is the true owner. Still, he continued to hear the case after he was asked not to because of conflict of interest.

Also of interest - the judge has a Mohawk name he explained - bestowed upon him by a Six Nations Clan Mother. So he was not without some empathy for Smith and the protestors.

However, in the end he warned them to follow his ruling. It means if they are still on the property Wednesday afternoon, the police will arrest them and they will immediately be charged with Criminal and Civil Contempt.

The judge, although ordering them off the land, seemed satisifed he was being lenient with them because he stated they will be sentenced to six months probation, with the proviso they stay away from the development site, or else they then would be imprisoned.

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News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org

March 17, 2006

A protest, steeped in Iroquois /Haudenosaunee history, and now blanketed by frustration and the law, has Six Nations members and supporters anxiously awaiting the outcome of a crucial court challenge. Six Nations community people peacefully protest at the site of Douglas Creek Estates development, near Caledonia "on Six Nations Territory known as the Haldimand Tract".

The history is well known to The People. In 1784, Sir Frederick Haldimand issued a proclamation authorizing Six Nations to take possession of and settle upon the banks of the Grand River including - Six miles on each side of the Grand River from Lake Erie to the river?s source - approximately 950,000 acres.

On Thursday, in Cayuga Provincial Court arguments over an injunction against some members of Six Nations were heard. In a news release, Janie Jamieson, a spokesperson for the Six Nations protestors, explained that Judge Thomas David Marshall was asked to step down from presiding over this case because he held land deeds on the Haldimand Tract. After a short recess, "Judge Marshall declared no conflict and proceeded". No judgment was made regarding charges being laid against protestors, and the hearing continues this morning at 11 a.m.

The court is to decide what action to take against the people who ignored the injunction ordering them to leave the development site. It is anticipated that Criminal Contempt charges may be laid and that would trigger Provincial Police action at the protest site, or as the people call it, "the land reclamation site".

The protestors, whose action began the end of February, are demanding 1.) there be no further development on their land and 2.) that outstanding Six Nations land claims be settled by the federal government.

During Canada's federal election campaign, the Six Nations Elected Council issued a statement of its expectations of a new government, including "uphold the honour of the Crown and resolve the outstanding land claims of the Six Nations of the Grand River". This should come as no surprise to the new Minister of Indian Affairs Jim Prentice. In fact, he once was an "insider" in the world of the land claims process, as he was head of the Indian Specific Claims Commission. In that role he would have been very aware of the huge difficulties Six Nations faced, in trying to get Ottawa to appropriately deal with its land rights issues.

So far, Prentice has been silent regarding the current Douglas Creek Estates protest near Caledonia.

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The Haldimand Tract . . . In 1784, Sir Frederick Haldimand issued a proclamation authorizing Six Nations to take possession of and settle upon the banks of the Grand River including - Six miles on each side of the Grand River from Lake Erie to the river?s source - approximately 950,000 acres.

News and Comment
by Tehaliwaskenhas
Bob Kennedy, Oneida
Copyright
Turtle Island Native Network
http://www.turtleisland.org
March 12, 2006

Criminal contempt charges will be discussed later this week in court, against Six Nations members protesting against a subdivision development project. Last week an injunction was issued against the protestors after Henco Industries went to court to have the protestors removed.

While the number of protestors is now smaller, there is a group bound and determined to stay. Meanwhile, the Ontario Provincial Police who received a copy of the court order, are now deciding what their next move will be.

There was no indication police action will be taken until after the court makes a ruling, regarding the protestors? decision to ignore the injunction ordering them to leave the site of the Douglas Estates, south of the town of Caledonia.

In fact, Six Nations members point out the land is the subject of a land rights dispute, which has yet to be addressed adequately by the Government of Canada.

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Six Nations Land Claims Progress Report
Six Nations Lands and Resources

Mayor of Brantford Speaks out to Support Six Nations

August 28th, 2000

NOTE FROM THE EDITOR: The following is an unedited Q. and A. done by back and forth E-Mail messages between Tehaliwaskenhas - Bob Kennedy, publisher and editor of Turtle Island Native Network on Vancouver Island and Mayor Chris Friel of Brantford, Ontario, regarding his concerns about the lack of progress in dealing with the rights of Six Nations people. The Q. and A. is an example of the new "Cyber" Journalism utilized by Turtle Island Native Network to bring you exclusive First Nations information.

Tehaliwaskenhas - Bob Kennedy's Question:
Do you support the Six Nations land claim and if so, why?

Mayor Friel's Answer:
Yes I do. My support comes from the review of the documents from over 200 years worth of injustice. The issue is as plain as the nose on your face. I could write a book on Joseph Brant and his life, and I don't know how anyone could disagree with the claim.

Question:
Did you commission a legal opinion from your city lawyer to arrive at your conclusions?

Answer:
Nope, I am bright enough to reach the conclusions on my own.

Question:
If the Six Nations settlement includes cash to purchase land in the area, do you agree that it be given full reserve status, no matter the amount of land?

Answer:
I think that agreements can be worked out between neighbours to provide services and increase the value of the land. For the Northwest Industrial area in the City of Brantford, we agreed that Six Nations land would not be taxed but would provide cash-in-lieu for the provision of services. This is a fair working agreement between neighbours. It allows us all to grow and prosper.

Question:
How would you describe your city's relationship with Six Nations?

Answer:
Improving. I see it everywhere. My Grandfather, Alan Rae, who passed away this year always said, "When it comes down to it, whether you live in Brantford or Six Nations, it is all about putting food on the table." Grandpa was a smart man.

Our communities have one history and our future is stronger if we accept one tradition. The two row wampum symbolises two canoes travelling down the river parallel, never crossing or interfering. This is an achievable relationship -- one that makes us all stronger and better.

I also believe that until Six Nations gets its own house in order -- no more confrontation between groups, no more us and them, no more enemies in the same house -- the resources and the ability to achieve greatness will be stymied. I think that the recent move to reclaim history, tradition and language is the step in the right direction. I pray for your unity.

Question:
Do you have a protocol agreement between the Nation and the city? (is a copy available?) If not, what formal process is there to maintain good relations and work on partnerships and mutual interests and projects?

Answer:
We have a protocol agreement for land development with communities from Paris to Lake Erie. Copies are available through the Band Council offices.

Question:
Other local governments in parts of Canada seem to oppose First Nations expansion of reserves, treaties, etc. What sets your community apart?

Answer:
I can't speak for everyone, but the reality is that we all have to live beside and between each other. If this is the case why would you want to create unnecessary confrontation or strife in your own home. Again, in the end, all anyone really cares about in any community is putting food on the table. This is a big bright beautiful world and everyone can eat.

The Corporation of the City of Brantford passed a resolution this Spring asking the Federal government to complete an audit of the missing Six Nations trust fund (from over 150 years ago). It was supported because it is the right thing to do. Injustice is injustice no matter what the circumstances.

Question:
What feedback have you had from Canada and what role is the province playing in all of this?

Answer:
Let me start by saying that I miss Jane Stewart as the Minister of Indian and Northern Affairs. More good honest work got done during her time than the hundred years before. Jane is a good and honourable person.

The Federal government unilaterally cancelled the Indian Commission of Ontario mandate and structure, making vague promises about a new process for negotiation. The Indian Commission of Ontario is responsible for our Protocol agreement and has proven itself to be very very very effective.

My understanding is that the Federal government cancelled the program as part of a school yard spat with the province -- "If you won't play by my rules than I am taking my ball and going home." Well great, thanks alot. These politicians and bureaucrats seem only concerned with their own positions, and have no understanding of what is necessary to resolve the dispute. It is my position that they are actively involved in not resolving the issue. They seem prepared to commit time and resources to make the process as impossible to unravel as a golf ball -- which is probably where they are spending most of their time anyway, FORE.

In fact, if I had to choose people to negotiate a resolution to these issues, none of these people would even make the first cut -- I wouldn't even let them warm the bench.

This issue and many other land claim and treaty issues could be solved whithin days, but I don't think that the negotiators (on both sides) are all that interested in a resolution. What would they do for a living?

In Peace and Friendship

Mayor Chris Friel
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