First Nations Leadership Council Statement of Support for Xeni Gwet’in

News Release
For Immediate Release
October 9, 2008

Coast Salish Territory (Vancouver, BC) – The BC First Nations Leadership Council stands behind and fully supports the position of the Xeni Gwet’in First Nation in their opposition to the use of Teztan Biny (Fish Lake – west of Williams Lake, BC) as a waste rock and tailings pond.

Parallels can be drawn to the solidarity of the Takla, Kwadacha, Tsay Keh Dene, and Gitxsan people when they stood together to protect the destruction of Amazay Lake. In that case, the project proponent tried to convince the environmental assessment panel that killing the lake was in the interest of the public. At the end of that process in 2007, the panel recommended ‘no’ to the destruction of this lake. The provincial and federal governments subsequently accepted the panel’s recommendations and made the right decision to refuse the granting of a permit to Northgate Minerals.

As a matter of public policy, all Canadians and First Nations alike should be concerned about the destruction of natural water bodies for mining waste.

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The First Nations Leadership Council is comprised of the political executives of the BC Assembly of First Nations, First Nations Summit, and the Union of BC Indian Chiefs.

The Council works together to politically represent the interests of First Nations in British Columbia and develop strategies and actions to bring about significant and substantive changes to government policy that will benefit all First Nations in British Columbia.

For more information please contact:


Grand Chief Edward John 778-772-8218
First Nations Summit Political Executive

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip
President, UBCIC: 250-490-5314

Ryneld Starr
BC Assembly of First Nations: 604-922-7733

UBCIC is a NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.