Friday, 22 February 2008

Appeal for Ardoch Algonquin First Nation fighting Uranium Mine

Melodie Carew, of Dandelion Food & Herb comments on "Bob Lovelace to Serve Six Months In Jail," a 15 February 2008 press releave from the Christian Peacemaker Teams:

"Bob, the Ardoch Algonquins, and others have been fighting this uranium mine for quite some time now. The mining interests are making an example of him by treating his activism with a harsh hand.

Please spread the word on this to any one that you know that might want to help...Donate if you can.

Also please get in touch with me, if you would be interested in helping organize a benefit."

From the press release:

"Kingston Regional Police took Bob Lovelace away from the courthouse in handcuffs this morning to serve a six month sentence on a contempt of court charge handed down by Justice Douglas Cunningham. Lovelace, age fifty-nine, is an ex-chief and spokesperson for the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation (AAFN). He is also father to seven children and an instructor at Queen's University and Sir Sandford Fleming Community College. Justice Cunningham imposed a fine of $25,000 on Lovelace and $10,000 on his community.

Lovelace said "I am in a dilemma. I want to obey Canadian law but Algonquin law instructs me that I must preserve Creation. I must follow Algonquin law." Judge Cunningham in his sentencing said, "There can only be one law - the law of Canada as expressed in this court."


Chris Reid, lawyer for AAFN, noted that there were other options available to the involved parties which would have prevented this outcome. The Province of Ontario could have removed the claimed land from the lands available to be staked and explored. Further, he observed "The Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that all provinces have a duty to consult with First Nations who have even a weak claim on land before they permit any development. Ontario has not consulted with any Algonquin band about this claim".

Ardoch Algonquin First Nation is a federally-unrecognized community and so does not receive funding from any government. They urgently need support for costs related to Bob's defence. They are asking supporters to please send donations, made out to: "Chris Reid, in trust for the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation" at the address below:

Christopher M. Reid
Barrister & Solicitor
154 Monarch Park Ave.
Toronto, ON M4J 4R6
Tel: (416) 466-9928
Fax: (416) 466-1852"

See Ardoch Algonquin spokesperson fined and jailed for trying to prevent uranium mining on Algonquin lands, the 16 February 2008 CPT newsletter for more information.

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