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ASSEMBLY OF MANITOBA CHIEFS STANDS WITH DAKOTA COMMUNITIES IN ASSERTION OF ECONOMIC SOVEREIGNTY September 17, 2013 Brandon, MB-

The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) is standing with the Dakota people of southwest Manitoba today in defending its rights to economic sovereignty. Several members of the Dakota nation will be appearing before a provincial court judge in Brandon to face various charges of selling tobacco outside of provincial laws and regulations. The Dakota people and other indigenous peoples in Manitoba have rights of self-determination that are not being respected by provincial law and regulation that is designed to prohibit the realization of sovereign indigenous economies and competitive markets stated Grand Chief Derek Nepinak of the AMC. For many years the Dakota peoples of current day southwest Manitoba have not been recognized by successive Canadian governments as indigenous to their ancestral lands and have faced economic sanctions and concerted efforts to prevent them from full participation in the development of the Manitoba economy under the Indian Act. Well known historian Sarah Carter, author of Lost Harvests, has written about the historical efforts of Canadian authorities to prevent the Dakotas from realizing economic independence and sustainability in their agricultural pursuits. The rationale being used today by provincial Crown lawyers to prevent the participation of the Dakotas in their own tobacco economy is the same rationale that was used over 100 years ago to prevent the Dakota people from developing flourishing agricultural economies further stated Nepinak. The AMC, by way of Resolution JUN-12.17 passed in June 2012 at the AMC Annual General Assembly have committed to supporting the Dakota people in their affirmation and their assertion of their pursuits of economic sovereignty and protecting their inherent rights to pursue economic development. For more information please contact:
Sheila North Wilson Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs 204- 805-1759 snorthwilson@manitobachiefs.com