Mohawk Nation Calls For Immediate Action Against The Infringement Of Its Inherent Indigenous Rights

Mohawk Nation Calls For Immediate Action Against The Infringement Of Its Inherent Indigenous Rights

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John Ahni Schertow
May 13, 2013
 

Akwesasne Mohawk Territory – Onerahtohkó:wa (May) 7, 2013

Greetings from the Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) Nation of the Haudenosaunee Six Nations Confederacy. Straddling both sides of the Kania’tarohwá:nen (St. Lawrence River), the Akwesasne Mohawk Territory exists within the ancestral homeland of the Kanien’kehá:ka Nation, which has never been ceded by any legitimate authority of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy.

Without the free, prior and informed consent of the Kanien’kehá:ka Nation, both Canada and the United States have since unilaterally drawn their national boundaries directly through our traditional and ancestral territory and now limit and disrupt our free and unobstructed movement within our own territory. Despite this challenge to our territorial sovereignty, the Kanien’kehá:ka Nation continues to retain and assert its inherent sovereign and indigenous right to cross freely into all Haudenosaunee territories.

Since the imposition of the Canadian Port of Entry within the Akwesasne Mohawk Territory, the Kanien’kehá:ka have experienced and endured racial harassment and mistreatment, the denial of their Haudenosaunee citizenship, arrest, and the confiscation of property by the Canadian Border Service Agency (CBSA). Since the Port of Entry was relocated to Cornwall four years ago, this mistreatment and abuse has intensified.

Therefore, the Kanien’kehá:ka Nation of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy are calling upon all people to join us in a call for action on May 17, 2013, to bring an end to Canada’s abuse and mistreatment of our citizens and their refusal to respect and honor the inherent sovereign and indigenous rights of the Haudenosaunee to freely move about its traditional and ancestral territory without hindrance. Despite the Government of Canada’s commitment towards truth and reconciliation with the Indigenous Peoples of this land, these regularly unprovoked and insensitive acts by the CBSA are another demonstration of Canada’s indifference and lack of respect towards indigenous peoples and demonstrate its callous disregard towards resolving these issues in good faith.

To resolve the border issue the Kanien’kehá:ka Nation requires the following:

1. To begin the process to rectify this longstanding conflict between our peoples, the Kanien’kehá:ka Nation requires an immediate meeting between the Government of Canada and the traditional leadership of the Haudenosaunee Six Nations Confederacy.

2. In keeping with the principles of coexistence and non-inference as embodied through the Two Row Wampum, the Kanien’kehá:ka Nation requires a commitment by the Government of Canada to retain a nation-to-nation relationship with the traditional Haudenosaunee Six Nations Confederacy, as their British fathers had in the past.

3. In order to preserve and maintain the distinct identity of the Haudenosaunee as a sovereign people, the Kanien’kehá:ka Nation requires the Government of Canada to recognize Haudenosaunee citizenship, by virtue of whatever identification issued by the Haudenosaunee Six Nations Confederacy.

The Kanien’kehá:ka Nation calls upon its people to gather at the Mohawk Nation Longhouse at 9am on May 17, 2013, for a peaceful march across the imaginary line that cuts through our nation, to let all know that we shall continue to exercise our inherent sovereign and indigenous rights and uphold them for future generations.

For more information, please contact the Mohawk Nation Office at 518-358-3381

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