The future of Innu ancestral land discussed at an extraordinary general
meeting with Chiefs Shawn A-in-chut Atleo (APN) and Ghislain Picard (APNQL)
in Matimekush-Lac John

MATIMEKUSH-LAC JOHN, QC, May 18 /CNW Telbec/ - The future of Nitassinan, the ancestral land of the five Innu communities represented by the Innu Strategic Alliance, will be the subject of an extraordinary public meeting to take place today in the Matimekush-Lac John (Schefferville) community, before the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations (AFN), Shawn A-in-chut Atleo, Chief of the Assembly of the First Nations of Quebec and Labrador (APNQL) Ghislain Picard, and the Chiefs of the Innu Strategic Alliance, Réal McKenzie (Matimekush-Lac John), George C.S. Bacon (Unamen Shipu), Georges-Ernest Grégoire (Uashat mak Mani-utenam), Raphaël Picard (Pessamit), and Jean-Charles Pietacho (Ekuanitshit). "Our community is looking forward to this special meeting and is eager to exchange ideas about the future of our territories," emphasized Réal McKenzie, Chief of the Conseil de la Nation Innu de Matimekush-Lac John.

Many issues will be examined at this public assembly, like what the federal government intends to implement in order to settle the issue of overlapping claims of the Innu in Labrador. This initiative by the federal government comes in light of actions undertaken by the Innu Strategic Alliance, over the last year.

Mining Projects

Many mining projects in the North Shore of Quebec and Labrador, will also be on the agenda. "Our community will not be fooled like in the 60s. For many years, our territory was stripped of its resources without our consent and without any benefit for our community. When the governments completed their mining operations, the town was destined for doom; the governments left it deprived of economic activity and resources and without taking account of our presence and without concern for our rights. If they now wish to take up mining again, they have to do so under our conditions, which will be discussed at this week's meetings," stated Chief Réal McKenzie.

The Innu Strategic Alliance

The Innu Strategic Alliance brings together the Chiefs of the Innu communities of Ekuanitshit, Matimekush-Lac John, Pessamit, Uashat mak Mani-utenam, and Unamen Shipu. It represents some 12,000 people, comprising 70% of the members of the Innu nation living in Quebec. The mandate of the Strategic Alliance is to enable the parties to defend, in a cooperative manner, their rights and to initiate various joint actions in order to attain political, economic, and legal results.

SOURCE INNU STRATEGIC ALLIANCE

For further information: For further information: Marie-Hélène Boudreau-Picard, Communications Consultant, Cardinal Communication, (450) 638-5159, (514) 349-2315, 1-877-638-5159, mariehelene@cardinalcommunication.com; www.cardinalcommunication.com

Organization Profile

INNU STRATEGIC ALLIANCE

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