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NEWS: UN special rapporteur ‘holds hope’ for January 11 meeting between Harper, First Nations

UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples James Anaya. Photo by Jean-Marc Ferré/ UN Photo.

UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples James Anaya. Photo by Jean-Marc Ferré/ UN Photo.

“I will continue to monitor developments as I hold out hope that the 11 January meeting will prompt meaningful and restorative action by the Government (of Canada) and First Nations leadership.” – United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples James Anaya.

A UN News Centre report notes, “The (Harper) Government affirmed a ‘commitment to continue working in partnership with Aboriginal peoples and in accordance with a relationship based on good faith, partnership and mutual respect,’ when it released a statement supporting the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples on 12 November 2010, said Mr. Anaya, who has asked the Canadian authorities to provide relevant information on this matter, in accordance with the terms of his mandate from the UN Human Rights Council.”

Two notes:
1) This coming April, Canada’s human rights record will be reviewed by the UN Human Rights Council. The Council of Canadians/ Blue Planet Project submission to that review highlights Canada’s violations of the human right to water in First Nations communities, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=17161.

2) In 2007, we issued a media release which stated, “The Council of Canadians denounces the Harper government for voting against the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples on September 13, 2007 along with the U.S., Australia and New Zealand. 143 countries voted in favour of the Declaration.” Three years after that historic UN vote, the Harper government finally endorsed the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, http://www.marketwire.com/press-release/Canada-Endorses-the-United-Nations-Declaration-on-the-Rights-of-Indigenous-Peoples-1352695.htm.

The UN News Centre article is at http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=43891&Cr=indigenous&Cr1#.UO2Gdm_LRS.