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Bill McKibben and Naomi Klein to join Canada's tar sands 'healing walk'

Stephen Leahy -   Photograph: Jeff Mcintosh/AP

Native elders to lead a spiritual gathering to heal land, air, water and all living forms harmed by world's largest industrial project.

Hundreds of activists including Bill McKibben and Naomi Klein are going into the heart of Canada's tar sands this week – not to protest the destruction of the local environment, but to pray for the 'healing' of land and the people.

Native elders from all over North America will lead people past lakes of tailings wastewater and massive infrastructure of the tar sands industry along the Athabasca River in Fort McMurray, Alberta.

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Week of Enbridge Tar Sands Actions Launch Idle No More's Sovereignty Summer

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Idle No More launches new website and communications platform to amplify the impact of the movement

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: This Friday, June 28th, Idle No More will launch a new website and communications platform that will engage hundreds of thousands of people via the web, social media, email, and text. Timed to coincide with the beginning of Sovereignty Summer (#SovSummer), Idle No More and Defenders of the Land’s joint campaign officially launched on June 21, 2013, the new site will allow the Idle No More movement to coordinate events and actions around the world. On Friday the new site will be live on and

At the heart of this new website is a contact database of over 100,000 people who are active in the movement. To enable ongoing and effective coordination of future events, this database will create separate contact lists of people involved in Idle No More, such as those living in a specific territory or community, those interested in drumming or singing at an event, or those inspired to host a Sovereignty Summer – Idle No More action or event.

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Sovereignty Summer Overview

sovereignty_summer_2013_med.pngOfficially launched on June 21 by Idle No More and Defenders of the Land, a network of Indigenous communities in land struggle, Sovereignty Summer is a campaign of coordinated non-violent direct actions to promote Indigenous rights and environmental protection in alliance with non-Indigenous supporters.

Sovereignty Summer actions aim to bring attention to the Harper government agenda, which undermines the rights of Indigenous Peoples, Canadian citizens, and the ongoing policies disrupting Indigenous peoples' lives - such as land claims, third party management, and no free and prior consent to development on Indigenous lands. We are in a critical time where lives, lands, waters and Creation are at-risk and they must be protected. 

The Harper government is moving quickly to pass the suite of legislation (C-45, C-428, S-2, S-6, S-8, S-212, C-27, and the First Nation Education Act) that undermines the treaties, our nation-to-nation relationship and Indigenous sovereignty, which is the last stand to protect our lands. Idle No More calls on non-Indigenous people to join Indigenous communities in coordinated non-violent direct actions in the summer. Alternatives will only come to life if we escalate our actions, taking bold non-violent direct action that challenges the illegitimate power of corporations who dictate government policy.


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First Nations group calls for B.C. to reject Northern Gateway pipeline work permits

8580212.jpgBy Gordon Hoekstra, Vancouver Sun

A B.C. First Nations group says it will not support Premier Christy Clark’s liquefied natural gas strategy unless the province withholds drilling permits for the proposed $6.5-billion Northern Gateway oil pipeline.

Enbridge has applied for provincial permits in 32 locations in northern B.C. along the proposed oil pipeline route to carry out work this summer meant to provide more information about below-ground conditions.

That work includes drilling to obtain rock samples and seismic testing to determine changes in rock type. Some of the work would require cutting trees, building trails and reopening logging roads.

The Yinka Dene Alliance — which represents six First Nations — has also sent a “cease and desist” letter warning Enbridge against trespassing on their traditional territories.

The group represents First Nations with traditional territories that encompass 25 per cent of the pipeline’s 1,170-kilometre route.

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‘Sovereignty summer’ activists vow more action to come

inm.jpgBy Global News

OTTAWA – Aboriginal protesters involved in an Enbridge pipeline occupation are vowing more action this summer.

Clayton Thomas-Muller – who speaks on behalf of the Sovereignty Summer group, an extension of last winter’s Idle No More movement – said the group plans more protests in Ontario, including a proposed 4,400-kilometre pipeline that would carry between 500,000 and 850,000 barrels of crude oil per day from Alberta and Saskatchewan to refineries in Eastern Canada.

“The Energy East TransCanada pipeline proposal is problematic. We’re very concerned about it. They should expect resistance to that proposal,” Thomas-Muller said in an interview. He also said they’re targeting a fracking project on a First Nations reserve in New Brunswick.

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Indian Country Today coverage of #SovSummer #IdleNoMore!

Screen_Shot_2013-06-28_at_12.00.18_AM.pngIndian Country Today coverage of #SovSummer #IdleNoMore! "In the meantime, the Idle No More movement that began late last year has bloomed this spring with new force, an Indigenous Spring, so to speak, that is spreading from eastern Canada’s Burnt Church to northern Saskatchewan. Native people are declaring that consent cannot be manufactured by federal threats."


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Activist Communique: Idle No More's Sovereignty Summer is heating up

More than 2,000 people gathered at Parliament Hill on Friday June 21, 2013, to kick off Sovereignty Summer -- a joint campaign between Idle No More and Defenders of the land.

The CBC is reporting that it "has learned that Shawn Atleo, national chief of the Assembly of First Nations, met with Harper in the prime minister's office in Langevin Block on Thursday to discuss progress since a Jan. 11 meeting that followed growing nation-wide protests and a fast by Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence."

No outcome of the meeting was publicly announced.

The mood at Parliament Hill was of defiance and of happiness as friends came together to sing and drum. Eager to disprove rumours that Idle No More is dead, many professed that they're willing to step up when the time comes to hit the streets again or support blockades -- like the current Swamp Line 9 anti-tar sands blockade in Hamilton, Ontario.

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Sovereignty Summer Campaign Calling for National Solidarity Actions and Support for Elsipogtog First Nation Front Line Activists

June 24, 2013 - Elsipogtog First Nation - This is an official notice and “Call Out” to all Idle No More & Defenders of the Land – Sovereignty Summer - activists, allies and supporters, and partnership organizations to act in aid and in the defence of grassroots Elsipogtog First Nation, families, community members, and supporters near Moncton, New Brunswick.

In the last few weeks, Elsipogtog First Nation community members and allies have taken peaceful action to prevent seismic testing vehicles and workers from testing for shale gas deposits for purposes of resource exploitation on Indigenous territories.

The protestors have remained strong and peaceful for numerous days and the RCMP have become more aggressive and violent; arresting a man as he held a sacred pipe in his hand, as well as arresting community members at the site of the sacred fire. SWN contractors have also threatened to run over Mi'kmaq youth at the site.

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Aboriginal Day marchers look ahead to 'Sovereignty Summer'

From The Canadian Press published on

As First Nations groups marched on Parliament Hill to mark National Aboriginal Day, NDP Leader Tom Mulcair forecast a "hot summer" as tensions in the country's indigenous communities threaten to boil over.

"I can tell from having talked to hundreds of representatives of First Nations that that frustration is palpable, it's growing, especially amongst the young people," Mulcair said Friday.

"We're going to see a lot of activity on this file during the summer. ... I'm quite concerned that it will be a hot summer on the native file across Canada, on the aboriginal file. Mr. Harper's going to have only himself to blame."

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