Canada should apologize to the High Arctic exiles and provide them with compensation, says a new report from the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples.

The commission called the move of 92 Inuit from Inukjuak to the High Arctic “illegal” and “paternalistic,” and accused Canada of lying to the Inuit. The Inuit were never told the real reasons for the move, including Canada’s desire to save money on income support programs for Inuit fur harvesters.

The Inuit were moved between 1953 and 1955 to two locations—Grise Ford on Ellesmere Island (about 2,000 km away from Inukjuak) and to Resolute Bay on Cornwallis Island (1,000 km away).

They endured hunger and cold, and were not warned about the long months of darkness. They were also not provided with warm clothing.

The Royal Commission says the move was illegal because it was financed with money that was intended for Inuit economic development. Also, the commission says Canada never gave the Inuit a choice in whether to move or stay.

John Amagoalik, one of the exiles, applauded the report. “It is honest and straightforward,” he told the Ottawa Citizen. “It doesn’t beat around the bush.”

Another exile told Canadian Press: “We were told all sorts of lies about the north—that the hunting would be good and everything. But it wasn’t. All that was there was gravel and mountains. No plants.”

The Inuit Tapirisat of Canada also responded positively. It is seeking $10 million in compensation and aid to the exiles who want to resettle in Inukjuak. The group is giving Ottawa a year to settle the issue. If it doesn’t, the Inuit ‘Tapirisat will take the government to court.

In recent years, a House of Commons committee and the Canadian Human Rights Commission have also called on Canada to make amends.