Six Nations Solidarity
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(Coast Salish Territory/Vancouver, April 23rd, 2006) Over 100 concerned members of the Vancouver Native community met at the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre on Saturday, April 22nd , to show solidarity with the Six Nations in Caledonia. Vice President of the United Native Nations David Dennis from the Nuu Chah Nulth states, "As a collective, we decided that in order to ensure the safety for the Six Nations women, children and families, we will have a peaceful demonstration on Tuesday, April 25th, 2006 at 12:30 pm at the Vancouver Art Gallery. We will unite with our brothers and sisters all across Turtle Island."
The Six Nations camp is unarmed and any police violence against the clan mothers and youth is unacceptable. On April 20, 2006 at around 4:30 AM, the camp was swarmed by 150 heavily armed police in cruisers and vans, using batons, tear gas cannons, and tasers with 16 arrests. One woman was brutally beaten by five OPP officers.
Organizer Annita McPhee from the Tahltan Nation further states, "We want to send a clear message to the federal and provincial governments that they must stop criminalizing our people who are standing up for our land and against injustices that been brought upon by the colonizers. Canada must stop using guns to resolve its disputes with the indigenous people."
Simply because the Ontario and federal governments have committed to negotiations, the threat of another police invasion is not over. The Six Nations have stated that the blockades will only end when the people at the camp decide for themselves whether enough progress has been made in ensuring an end to the ongoing theft of Six Nations land.
This rally in Vancouver is intended to serve as a deterrence to prevent any further police escalation against the Six Nations. We stand in support of the demands of the clan mothers for an immediate cessation of construction by Henco Industries on Six Nations territory which has never been surrendered and was formally recognized by the Crown as part of the 1784 Haldimand Deed and for peaceful resolution to the current standoff to be conducted on a nation-to-nation basis.
Elders from the community encouraged everyone "to pray for the safety of the Clan mothers, children, traditional teachers, and hereditary chiefs. This is a time for all Nations to stand together."