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#IdleNoMore #CDNPoli #NWT Arrange meeting requested by Chief Spence, Lawyers Rights Watch Canada tells @PMHarper

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  • George Lessard
    ...The Right Honourable Stephen Harper Office of the Prime Minister 80 Wellington Street Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2 Fax: 613-941-6900 E-mail:
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 30, 2012
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      "...The Right Honourable Stephen Harper
      Office of the Prime Minister
      80 Wellington Street
      Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2
      Fax: 613-941-6900
      E-mail: stephen.harper@...; pm@...

      Dear Prime Minister,

      Re: Meeting requested by Chief Theresa Spence of Attiwapiskat

      We write to urge that you immediately arrange a meeting as requested by
      Chief Theresa Spence. Chief Spence wants a meeting on a Nation to Nation
      basis with the Prime Minister, the Crown, and the Provincial and
      Territorial leaders along with all the First Nations leaders to discuss
      First Nations� inherent and treaty rights.
      Please remember that Canada is constitutionally defined as a �free and
      democratic society� founded on principles that recognize the supremacy of
      the rule of law. This means that law must be formulated with the informed
      consent of the Canadian people. The equality rights in our constitution
      are meant to ensure that law is used as a tool to achieve justice for all.
      This is part of our traditional Anglo-Canadian constitutional heritage.
      These principles have been affirmed by international human rights treaties
      that Canada has ratified. The Canadian constitution also explicitly
      requires respect for �aboriginal and treaty rights�. Moreover, just as
      Parliament was established to ensure that law-making is founded on informed
      public discussion, so too the Supreme Court of Canada supports the right of
      Indigenous peoples to meaningful consultation on issues that concern them.
      In addition, we draw your attention to Article 19 of the United Nations
      Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which Canada has endorsed,
      and which provides that...
      "States shall consult and cooperate in good faith with the indigenous
      peoples concerned through their own representative institutions in order to
      obtain their free, prior and informed consent before adopting and
      implementing legislative or administrative measures that may affect them."
      In summary, in this country it is unquestionably illegal to use the power
      of the State to destroy or repress rights or grant unwarranted privileges.
      Conversely, it is unquestionably legal to use all peaceful means to resolve
      both internal problems and external disputes...."

      GEORGE LESSARD <http://www.flickr.com/photos/george-lessard/sets/129389/>
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