National Chief Calls for an immediate and thorough Investigation into the Shocking Hate Crime at Kitigan Zibi First Nation

    OTTAWA, June 21 /CNW Telbec/ - A despicable hate crime - last night's
vandalization and destruction of the Kitigan Zibi Cultural Centre - must be
fully investigated and resolved as quickly as possible, according to Assembly
of First Nations National Chief Phil Fontaine.
    "I am deeply saddened, shocked and gravely concerned that such a heinous
hate crime could be committed against the people of the Kitigan Zibi First
Nation," said National Chief Phil Fontaine, of the white supremacist symbols
and words spray painted on a cultural centre in the Algonquin community of
Kitigan Zibi. The tents and picnic tables set up for National Aboriginal Day
were also destroyed.
    "This crime is a hate crime, and it harms all First Nations people,
everywhere. We send our good wishes to the people of Kitigan Zibi and we stand
together with them in a call to bring these hate mongers to receive their full
punishment before the law. We expect no less than a full, speedy and just
resolution to this matter," said National Chief Fontaine. "The Criminal Code
of Canada says a hate crime is committed to intimidate, harm or terrify not
only a person, but an entire group of people to which the victim belongs. The
victims are targeted for who they are, not because of anything they have done.
    "We expect that this hate crime will receive the same kind of thorough
and serious investigation that other hate crimes have received in the past,
such as the firebombings in Montreal," said National Chief Fontaine. "We must
ensure to send a very strong mesage to those who would commit such hate
crimes, that they will not be tolerated or condoned and that they will be
brought to justice."
    "This hate crime underscores the need for greater public education and
awareness required on behalf of all Canadians in order to better understand
all Aboriginal people. We once again call upon all Canadians to participate in
our peaceful efforts to do this on June 29th. There are many events in all
regions that are being planned. The full support of all Canadians to stand
together with us against the hateful acts of a few, is needed at this time and
would be warmly received."

    The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing
First Nations citizens in Canada.

For further information:

For further information: Bryan Hendry, A/Director of Communications,
(613) 241-6789, ext. 229, cell (613) 293-6106,; Nancy Pine,
Communications Advisor - Office of the National Chief, (613) 241-6789, ext
243, (613) 298-6382,

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