reprinted from the Eastern Door

Matthew Coon Come, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, is calling for a boycott of the Delta Hotel chain by all First Nations citizens in Canada. According to an AFN press release, the chain is behind the attempts by the Sun Peaks Resort Corporation to have members of the Seewepme Nation arrested for setting up a camp on their traditional territory.

“The Delta Hotel chain has put its financial interests ahead of the recognition of the Aboriginal Rights of the First Nations who own that land,” said Coon Come.

“The Delgamuuk’w decision of the Supreme Court of Canada has clearly stated that Aboriginal title exists in British Columbia and that the economic and legal right to the land still belongs to First Nations.

“The private interests behind this project are acting as if we didn’t exist and their interests are the only one worth protecting. We must show them they are wrong and the bottom line is the way to direct that message.”

The First Nations who have set up camp on the land are citizens of the Neskonlith and Adams Lake First Nations. The group includes Irene Billy, a 74-year-old elder.

The Natives have been served with an injunction ordering them off their own land or else face arrest. Since the contingent has decided not to leave, the Sun Peaks Resort Corporation applied for an enforcement order to have the protesters forcibly removed from the land.

According to AFN, the hotel chains wish to develop that land as part of the Sun Peaks Ski Resort complex. The action is proceeding despite a land claim by the Nation on that territory.