Aboriginal people in Ontario are prepared to lay down their lives to protect their traditional lands from any unwanted development, a group of First Nations chiefs said Tuesday.

Aboriginal communities have seen what Canadian and Ontario laws have done to their land over the last 147 years, Beardy said.

"The land has become sick," he said. "We become sick. We become poor, desperate and dying."

The people of Grassy Narrows First Nation are still suffering from mercury poisoning decades after the Wabigoon river around their land was contaminated by a local paper mill, Beardy added.

Grand Chief of Treaty 3, Warren White, argued that Prime Minister Stephen Harper recognizes the state of Israel, but not the lands of Canada's aboriginal peoples.

"He needs to have the same principles that he's saying about Israeli lands to Treaty 3 territory and native lands in Canada," White said.

"Clean up your own backyard before you go and spill a lot of money into disasters in other countries."

Grand Chief Harvey Yesno of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation added that the province's aboriginal people will draw a line in the sand, put a stake in the ground and tie themselves to it if that's what it takes to protect their land from unwanted resource development.

"We're no longer just going to be civilly disobedient. We're going to defend our lands, and there's a big difference there," he said.

"Our young people are dying, our people are dying. So let's die at least defending our land."

Aboriginal communities don't want to harm others, said Beardy. But they'll do what they must to stop an incursion on their lands, such as forming human blockades to stop the clearcutting of trees, he said.

"Anything that happens on our aboriginal homeland now, they must consult with us," said Roger Fobister Sr., chief of Grassy Narrows First Nation. "Even if they're going to cut down one tree, they better ask us."

Responses to "'Let's die at least defending our land,' says Ontario First Nations chief"

  1. THe world of the European has never admitted it's genocide practices...and we are suppose to LEARN from HISTORY... I have worked over 30 years to dispel the myths and encourage honor of indigenous people...especially North American upon which my lineage has roots. To watch the ignorance continue enough to make people see, there are no ears listening in the corporations and governs. PEOPLE one hearted people just want to live in peace and not be poisoned. THE European countries do not allow chemical pollution of land and food and water. So I stand by the tribal we are all connected. If they do not hold what is natural sacred...we all lose.. Munay

  2. Unknown says:

    Straight Talk from the Chiefs, which is exactly what they are required to do - it is their responsibility. This is their reality now, it must stop. I Salute You, Chiefs for your noble ways and my heart cries that you have to watch on as your people suffer just as I am certain your hearts are greatly troubled. Strength and Honor to you, my Prayers go with you as well as my Love and Respect. Truly I am sorry for your plight.

  3. Unknown says:

    My name is Art Reynolds, not Unknown. The comment above is mine.

  4. WTF is this guy going on about ? Harper did way more for Natives than Trudeau will ever do

  5. Unknown says:

    May we find the Strength in our selves,our creator:we in all means may we win
    a battle our first nations chiefs unison one whole in know to struggle our government downplaying our rights land treaties? the government of Canada goes on foreign Nations resolves problems! Firsts Nations are left with agenda in our struggle with no recourse on their behave, are we not human do we exist
    they push off too a side when we get attention it's uniforms of military or police brutality how is our nation suppose function on these grounds you leave us stray!!!

  6. Unknown says:

    i guess blood is coming

  7. Unknown says:

    the govt want to see blood

  8. Anonymous says:

    Our people are strong and resilient and we will continue to be.

  9. Ramapough Lenape says:

    The Indigenous across the America's needs to stand up and stop the destruction of our lands.

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