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Barriere Lake Algonquins peacefully blockade highway 117:
Community loses patience with broken agreements and coup d'etat on Algonquin territory
Brief description: After exhausting all political avenues, the Algonquins of Barriere Lake and many non-native supporters have just blockaded highway 117. They will maintain the peaceful blockade until both the Canadian and Quebec governments honour their signed agreements that would allow co-management of their traditional territory and resource revenue sharing, and until Canada respects their leadership customs by appointing an observer to witness a leadership selection in accordance with their Customary Governance, and in good faith recognize the outcome.
Click here for the Algonquins' full list of demands
Quotes from Barriere Lake Algonquin Spokespeople:
Michel Thusky, community spokesperson: "To avoid their obligations, the federal government has deliberately violated our leadership customs by ousting our Customary Chief and Council. In what amounts to a coup d'etat, they are recognizing a Chief and Council rejected by a community majority. The Quebec government is cooperating with the federal government too because they are using the leadership issue as an excuse to bury the 1991 and 1998 Agreements they signed with our First Nation."
Yesterday morning, Monday April 28th, police forces of mixed origin invaded the Tyendinaga blockade on Deseronto road. Following a short confrontation, a trailer belonging to the blockaders along with food and a barbeque were confiscated.
A trench dug by the Mohawk blockaders was filled in by the police, which forced them to retract to a single point on Deseronto road. Most of the blockades established over the weekend have been taken down or forcibly dismantled by police.
The Quarry is now surrounded with 2-300 police officers along with intelligence and surveillance vehicles.
Of the five arrestees, detained Friday April 28th, 2008, Daniel John Doreen, 34, and Stephen Chartrand, 32, were released.
According to The Whig, the bail conditions the two had to sign include keeping away from the Quarry, reporting to police weekly; not to plan, incite or participate in any protests that "interfere with traffic on highways, airways, railways or public waterways" and not associate with the co-accused, unless for "religious or cultural ceremonies."
Matthew James Kunkel, 21, Clint Brant, 29, and Shawn Brant, 44, remain in custody.
Solidarity actions from by non native protesters continue to support the Tyendinaga community throughout the province. A Part of the Hanlon Highway in Guelph was briefly blockaded by allies last night. Sunday saw a convergence at Dalton McGuinty’s office, and an emergency rally is scheduled in Toronto today at noon.
The Aboriginal People's Television Network's latest newscast notes some interesting details about Shawn Brant's arrest on Friday.
Worth a look.
After over 200 police officers raided the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory west of Belleville, Ontario on April 22nd, 2008 actions have escalated. On the evening of Friday, April 25th, the Tyendinaga community was again under attack, while continuing the blockade intended to protect itself and its "disputed" Quarry. Currently the Nation is surrounded by a wide police perimeter that prevents access to the Quarry.
"At the centre of the dispute is the Culbertson Tract, land which rightfully belongs to the Mohawks of Tyendinaga. Community members have been occupying a gravel quarry site for over a year," according to TMT.
Allies attempting to enter the perimeter are being turned away. Only residents holding valid documentation of property ownership within the perimeter are allowed entry.
Earlier in the week Agent Provocateurs were deployed in the local community to incite a conflict with the Mohawk Nation. The attempt failed but prevented local allies from supporting the Nation due to fear of police retaliation.
Police have attempted to dismantle the Mohawk blockade on Friday, and have beaten and arrested four individuals. These are Matthew James Kunkel, 21, Clint Brant, 29, Daniel John Dorene, 34, and Steve Chartrand, 32. They are scheduled to appear on Monday, April 28, 2008 in Napanee court. Prior to these arrests, Shawn Brent, 44, was arrested at a traffic stop allegedly for his role in preventing racist community members from attacking a woman and her child.
In solidarity, Six Nations' Mohawks in Caledonia have set up similar blockades at the Highway 6 bypass of the Sixth Line bridge and elsewhere.
The Dominion is a monthly paper published by an incipient network of independent journalists in Canada. It aims to provide accurate, critical coverage that is accountable to its readers and the subjects it tackles. Taking its name from Canada's official status as both a colony and a colonial force, the Dominion examines politics, culture and daily life with a view to understanding the exercise of power.