Canada on Tuesday became a full supporter of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Delegates in the General Assembly of the United Nations in New York cheered as Canada officially removed its objector status to the UN declaration on the rights of Indigenous peoples Tuesday, a decade after it was adopted by the General Assembly.
Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs, Carolyn Bennett, said that Canada’s announcement also reaffirms Canada’s commitment to adopt and implement the Declaration in accordance with the Canadian Constitution.
“This announcement confirms Canada’s commitment to a renewed, nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous peoples – a relationship based on recognition of rights, respect, co-operation and partnership. Canada will engage with Indigenous groups on how to implement the principles of the Declaration. This engagement will include provinces and territories whose cooperation and support is essential to this work and to advancing the vital work of reconciliation with Indigenous peoples in Canada,” a federal government press release said in Ottawa.
Bennett is leading a delegation that includes leaders from the Assembly of First Nations, Native Women’s Association of Canada, Métis National Council, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, as well as elders and youth.
“Today’s announcement that Canada is now a full supporter of the Declaration, without qualification, is an important step in the vital work of reconciliation. Adopting and implementing the Declaration means that we will be breathing life into Section 35 of Canada’s Constitution, which provides a full box of rights for Indigenous peoples,” Bennett said.
National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations Perry Bellegarde tweeted that it was a “historic day” as Canada moves toward reconciliation with Indigenous peoples. – CINEWS