Iroquois Confederacy says Harper government seeking to 'destroy our collective sovereignty'

The Iroquois Confederacy says the federal Conservative government is planning to end Canada’s obligations to Indigenous peoples and terminate their distinct status in the country.

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The Iroquois Confederacy says the federal Conservative government is planning to end Canada’s obligations to Indigenous peoples and terminate their distinct status in the country.

Haudenosaunee Grand Council, which represents the still existing Iroquois political structure that predates contact with Europeans, said in a statement that the Stephen Harper government aims to destroy “any semblance of nation-to-nation relationships.”

The confederacy said it would also not recognize Bill C-45, the omnibus budget bill the included changes to the Indian Act and withdrew federal oversight over the majority of waterways across the country.

“As the inherent custodians of Haudenosaunee sovereignty within all Haudenosaunee communities and territories, the Haudenosaunee Grand Council is responsible for being ever vigilant and protective against any challenge or threat to our collective sovereignty,” said the statement, dated Dec. 31, 2012. “It is clear that Bill C-45 and subsequent bills seek to destroy our collective sovereignty.”

The confederacy said the Harper government plans to “privatize and enfranchise Indigenous lands and waterways,” along with downloading its federal political responsibilities to the provinces.

“The Haudenosaunee remind the people of Canada of its desired relationship through the tenets of the Two Row Wampum, which champions coexistence and non-interference. Beginning with this basic relationship of mutual respect, our two peoples can resume our journey along the river of life as independent equals and resolve our problems along the way,” said the statement. “Here we shall stand.”

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Before moving to become the APTN News social media producer, Mark was the executive producer for the news in eastern Canada. Before starting with APTN in 2009, Mark worked at CBC Radio and Television in Newfoundland and Labrador and Ottawa.

5 thoughts on “Iroquois Confederacy says Harper government seeking to 'destroy our collective sovereignty'

  1. Canada signed the Rome Statute:

    ICC definition of the crime of apartheid

    Article 7 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court defines crimes against humanity as:

    Article 7Crimes against humanity

    For the purpose of this Statute, ‘crime against humanity’ means any
    of the following acts when committed as part of a widespread or
    systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with
    knowledge of the attack:




    Deportation or forcible transfer of population;

    Imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law;


    Rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy,
    enforced sterilization, or any other form of sexual violence of
    comparable gravity;

    Persecution against any identifiable group or collectivity on
    political, racial, national, ethnic, cultural, religious, gender as
    defined in paragraph 3, or other grounds that are universally recognized
    as impermissible under international law, in connection with any act
    referred to in this paragraph or any crime within the jurisdiction of
    the Court;

    Enforced disappearance of persons;

    The crime of apartheid;

    Other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing
    great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical

    Later in Article 7, the crime of apartheid is defined as:

    The ‘crime of apartheid’ means inhumane acts of a character similar
    to those referred to in paragraph 1, committed in the context of an
    institutionalised regime of systematic oppression and domination by one
    racial group over any other racial group or groups and committed with
    the intention of maintaining that regime.[15]

  2. My biggest concern is very specific: The passing of a bill which ‘modifies’ the Indian Act essentially is setting a precedent in regards to that Act’s authority, yet under the recent changes at the CHRA, under International law, noting this includes International Criminal Law any perpetuation of that Act under law is illegal. The Conservative Government of Canada violated International Criminal Law under the Rome Statute, as one of the law’s relate to the Apartheid laws. In doing so, the Canadian Government framed itself as the ‘ruler of law’ in regards to all of these territories regardless of current treaties and additional areas which are in that process. Each relationship is unique, yet this one Act is being perpetuated. We must pursue actions against the Conservative Government in regards to these violations both within Canada and Internationally. Any transitional period between the Indian Act and future framework building is not to be an opportunity for the current regime to break all basic Human Rights standards. and noting many of the apartheid laws were provided by the same Act.

  3. It is important also to note that under the provisions of clause 6 just
    quoted, the terms of the treaty were fixed by the governments of the Dominion
    and Ontario; the commissioners were empowered to offer certain conditions,
    but were not allowed to alter or add to them in the event of their not being
    acceptable to the Indians.

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