OTTAWA, June 28, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - Assembly of First Nations (AFN) National Chief Perry Bellegarde responded to today's announcement that the governments of Canada and Mexico have agreed to an accord on Indigenous peoples.
"Any initiatives aimed at Indigenous peoples must respect Indigenous rights, Treaties, human rights and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples," said AFN National Chief Bellegarde. "We are concerned that First Nations have not had the opportunity to provide input on the Accord announced today. We fully expect to get more details immediately so we can assess the accord and consider the next steps. We are pushing for sustained action to close the gap and ensure respect for Indigenous rights and it is essential that First Nations be directly involved in any agreement of this kind from the beginning."
While details are limited, the federal government announced today that Canada and Mexico have agreed to an accord that is focused on social and economic development of Indigenous peoples in the two countries. There are commitments to include First Nations and Indigenous peoples in the work that will take place under the accord. AFN National Chief Bellegarde said the AFN is studying the announcement and will be seeking more information to share with First Nations as it becomes available.
The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing First Nation citizens in Canada. Follow AFN on Twitter @AFN_Comms, @AFN_Updates.
SOURCE Assembly of First Nations
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