Canada's New Government Fulfills Commitment on Treaty Land Entitlement in Manitoba

    WINNIPEG, Aug. 20 /CNW Telbec/ - The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of
Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and
Non-Status Indians, today announced that Canada's New Government surpassed its
2006-2007 commitment to transfer 150,000 acres of land to Manitoba First
Nations as part of its Treaty Land Entitlement (TLE) agreements.
    "Last year Canada's New Government made a commitment to First Nations in
Manitoba to take action on the province's unacceptable backlog in Treaty Land
Entitlement settlement agreements, and we set an ambitious target of 150,000
acres per year for four years," said Minister Strahl. "Today I am proud to
report that not only have we lived up to our commitment, but we have surpassed
our goal by transferring more than 159,000 acres."
    At the Annual General Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, Minister Chuck Strahl
confirmed that over 159,185 acres of land have been converted to reserve
status since August 22, 2006 under Treaty Land Entitlement agreements. The
conversion of this land fulfills the first year of a four-year commitment made
by the federal and provincial governments to transfer 150,000 acres per year
to Manitoba First Nations. Fulfillment of this commitment is good not only for
First Nations, but for Manitobans, as it helps create strong foundations on
which to grow local economies.
    "Congratulations to all the parties - federal, provincial and First
Nation - who have made this success possible," remarked the Honourable Vic
Toews, President of the Treasury Board and Member of Parliament for the riding
of Provencher (Manitoba). "The additions of these lands to First Nation
communities can help foster stronger economies and bring economic benefits to
surrounding areas as well."
    Between 1871 and 1910, most First Nations in Manitoba signed the numbered
treaties with Canada. In Manitoba, the majority of First Nations received
their entire land allocations under the treaties; however, some did not.
    To address this shortfall, Canada, Manitoba and 28 Manitoba First Nations
negotiated agreements. Under these agreements, Canada and Manitoba committed
to adding up to 1.3 million acres to First Nation reserve lands and paying
more than $204 million in compensation. The majority of the land (1,085,959
acres) is being transferred to First Nations from unoccupied Crown land. The
balance is being acquired from private land owners on a willing seller/willing
buyer basis.

    This release is also available on the Internet at

For further information:

For further information: Minister's Office: Ted Yeomans, Director of
Communications, Office of the Honourable Chuck Strahl Indian and Northern
Affairs Canada, (819) 997-0002; INAC Media Relations: (819) 953-1160

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