WENDAKE, QC, June 28, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - The Chief of the AFNQL,
Ghislain Picard, denounces the Quebec government's attempt to discredit
the actions taken by the Atikamekw nation, and accuse the Atikamekw
leaders of holding the regional economy hostage. It is rather the
Atikamekw nation that is held hostage by a negotiation process that has
been ongoing for a whole generation, without real progress.
Today is the third day of roadblock for the Atikamekw nation; a blockade
meant to put an end to the pillage of its territory without appropriate
consultation, accommodation, compensation or sharing of revenues drawn
from the exploitation of natural resources.
The Chief of the AFNQL is asking the Chiefs of the other nations of
Quebec and Labrador to show their support to the Atikamekw nation. "All
the nations, without exception, are faced with the same arrogance of a
Quebec government that is trying by every way possible to evade its
obligations towards our peoples. As of today, I am asking all the
member Chiefs who sit at our table to show, in accordance with any
means which they consider to be appropriate, support to the Atikamekw
nation, indicated Ghislain Picard. This indifference has run its
course. It has become urgent for our people to mobilize."
The Chief of the AFNQL finds unacceptable and inappropriate the comments
of Aboriginal Affairs Minister, Geoffrey Kelley, who, on the one hand
claims to understand the frustration of the Atikamekw Chiefs while, on
the other hand, says that a blockade is not the way to find a solution.
"The Aboriginal Affairs Minister must learn to be a little more
constructive. How many times should we call this government to order?
We should not forget that the Atikamekw leaders have already invested
enough in this negotiation process that has gone awry!" added Chief
The Chief of the AFNQL doesn't leave out the possibility of sending a
neutral international observer on the blockade site. "The violation of
rights of the Atikamekw people and other nations has lasted long
enough. Time has come for the international community to look closely
into the attitude of governments which claim to be ahead of its time as
regard relations with our peoples", concluded Chief Picard.
About the AFNQL
The Assembly of the First Nations of Quebec and Labrador is the
political organization regrouping the 43 Chiefs of the First Nations of
Quebec and Labrador. www.apnql-afnql.com.
SOURCE ASSEMBLY OF FIRST NATIONS OF QUEBEC AND LABRADOR
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