Lubicon Lake Indian Nation
Little Buffalo Lake, AB
3536 - 106 Street
Edmonton, AB T6J 1A4
October 14, 1992
Attached for your information is a copy of a resolution on the plight of the Lubicon passed by the participants of an International Boreal Forest Conference held in Jokkmokk, Sweden on October 2-4, 1992. The resolution is modeled after a similar resolution passed by an International Aboriginal Rights Conference held in Genoa, Italy on July 25, 1992.
The Jokkmokk Conference was attended by representatives of environmental organizations, human rights organizations, journalists, scientists and aboriginal peoples from Australia, Canada, Columbia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Group of Independent States, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Romania, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, United Kingdom and the United States of America.
Among the environmental, scientific and media organizations attending the Jokkmokk Conference were "Last Chance" (Norway), Greenpeace International (Netherlands), Grimsö Scientific Station (Sweden), Students for Nature Protection (Estonia), The Ecologist Youth of Romania, Swedish Society for Nature Conservation, Tahoe/Baikal Institute (USA), Environmental Education Association (USA), Green Weekly (Finland), Earth First (England), Earth Island Institute (USA), Lithuanian Fund for nature, Finlands TV/Miljönytt-Radio 2, Domänposten Magazine (Sweden), Pro Regenwald (Germany), WWF International (Switzerland), Robin Wood (Germany), Taiga Task Force (USA), Pacific Energy and Resources (USA), Ecological Project Center (Russia), Magazin Skogeiren (Norway), Greenpeace Quebec, Socio-Ecological Union (Russia), Swedish National Radio, Suomen Luonto Magazine (Finland), Wilderness Movement Finland, Temperate Forest Campaign (England), Gaia Foundation (England), Norwegian Ornithological Society, WWF - U.K., Swedish Youth Association for Environmental Studies and Conservation, Domän Skog (Sweden), Swedish Environmental Protection Agency, Saminuorrra-Swedish Sami Youth, FFRI Rovaniemi (Finland), Friends of the Forest (Canada), RIVM (Netherlands), Natural Resources Defense Council (USA), Sveriges Natur Magazine (Sweden), BBC Radio Scotland, Rainforest Information Centre (Australia), The Environmental Committee of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Greenpeace-Canada, Canadian Future Forest Alliance, Norwegian Society for the Conservation of Nature, The Scottish Office, WWF-Sweden, WBMG (England), JATAN - FoE Japan, FURA (Sweden), Women's Environmental Network (U.K.), Swedish NGO Secretariate on Acide Rain, Greenpeace Sweden, IWGIA (Denmark), Metsöhallitus Perö-Polyolan (Finland), The Green Web (Canada), WWF-Sweden, FoE-England and Wales, WWF-Latvia, World Watch Institute (USA), FoE-Sweden, Greenpeace Germany, Radio Pasvik FNF (Norway), Ymperistö Ja Kehitys Ry (Finland), Alaska Boreal Forest Group (USA), Amazone Network/Gaia Foundation (Columbia), Kachemak Bay Citizens Coalition (USA), Lithuania Green Movement, Netherlands National Committee for IUCN, EYFA/A/ SEED (Netherlands), Union for the Conservation of Nature (Norway), Reforesting Scotland, Project Down Angara River Movement (Russia), Big Mountain Aktionsgruppe (Germany), Citizens Coalition for Economic Justice (South Korea).
The platform adopted by the Jokkmokk Conference makes reference to the frontline role of aboriginal people in defense of the boreal forests of the world and identifies "hot spots" around the world where action must be taken and international attention focused. The current stand-off between Daishowa and the Lubicons is specifically mentioned as one such "hot spot". The attached resolution outlines the action contemplated.
INTERNATIONAL NGO-CONFERENCE, 1992
"THE BOREAL FORESTS OF THE WORLD"
October 2-4, 1992
RESOLUTION ON THE LUBICON LAKE INDIAN NATION
WHEREAS in 1899 the Government of Canada made a treaty purporting to extinguish aboriginal land rights with aboriginal peoples in the area surrounding the traditional Lubicon territory;
AND WHEREAS traditional Lubicon lands were isolated, inaccessible and geographically unknown to the Government of Canada at the time that the Government of Canada made treaty with the aboriginal peoples in the area surrounding the traditional Lubicon territory;
AND WHEREAS the Lubicon people were consequently missed by the Canadian government treaty-making party, have never signed a treaty with the Government of Canada even purporting to extinguish Lubicon ownership of traditional Lubicon lands and therefore retain unceded aboriginal title to traditional Lubicon lands;
AND WHEREAS in 1930 the Government of Canada purported to transfer ownership of a large area which included the unceded traditional Lubicon territory to the Alberta Provincial Government;
AND WHEREAS in February of 1988 the Alberta Provincial Government sold the trees from a huge 45,000 sq.km area which completely blankets the unceded 10,00 sq.km. traditional Lubicon territory to a Japanese forest industry giant called Daishowa;
AND WHEREAS after a massive public outcry Daishowa agreed in March of 1988 to stay out of the unceded Lubicon territory at least until there is a settlement of outstanding Lubicon land rights and an agreement negotiated between Daishowa and the Lubicon people respecting Lubicon wildlife and environmental concerns;
AND WHEREAS in the fall of 1990 Daishowa attempted to circumvent its agreement with the Lubicon people by sending sub-contractors and a wholly-owned subsidiary into the unceded Lubicon territory to clear-cut Lubicon trees;
AND WHEREAS the Lubicon people have publicly made clear many times their firm conviction that they will be rendered extinct as a people if they allow the clear-cutting of the forest upon which they have historically depended for their survival;
AND WHEREAS the logging camp of a Daishowa sub-contractor engaged in clear-cutting unceded Lubicon lands was raided and destroyed, effectively shutting down logging operations in the unceded Lubicon territory for the winter of 1990-91;
AND WHEREAS thirteen Lubicons have been charged with destruction of the logging camp of the Daishowa sub-contractor and now face criminal charges which could send each of them to jail for terms of up to 50 years;
AND WHEREAS in the spring of 1991 Daishowa publicly announced that it had stayed out of the unceded Lubicon territory for as long as possible and would have to start clear-cutting Lubicon trees in the fall of 1991 or face the shut-down of sub-contractors and its wholly-owned subsidiary who are reputedly obligated under Provincial law to supply the Daishowa bleached kraft pulp mill with trees from the unceded Lubicon territory;
AND WHEREAS Lubicon supporters across Canada, Europe, Australia and Japan responded to the re-newed Daishowa threat to clear-cut Lubicon trees with demonstrations, a letter writing campaign and an increasingly effective boycott of Daishowa paper products;
AND WHEREAS a thereby besieged Daishowa reacted to the international STOP DAISHOWA campaign of Lubicon supporters by again temporarily cancelling plans to clear-cut unceded Lubicon territory and by publicly demanding the Canadian Government take action to resolve the question of outstanding Lubicon land rights;
AND WHEREAS the Canadian Federal Minister of Indian Affairs subsequently contacted the Lubicons and proposed behind-closed-door negotiations which in fact are going nowhere but which both levels of Canadian government and Daishowa are publicly citing as evidence that progress is being made and that therefore the STOP DAISHOWA campaign should be called off;
NOW THEREFORE the participants of the International NGO-Conference "The Boreal Forests of the World" concerned with recognition and respect for both the rights of Aboriginal societies and the urgency to protect the worlds forests,
DO HEREBY RESOLVE:
1. That the participants of the founding meeting of the Taiga Rescue Network hereby support the Lubicon Lake Indian Nation in their efforts to achieve a fair and generous settlement of their land rights dispute with the Canadian governments;
2. That the participants of this meeting call on the Governments of Canada and Alberta to finally enter into meaningful negotiations with the Lubicon Lake Indian Nation;
3. That Daishowa, the forestry company threatening the destruction of the Lubicon's environment may desist from any logging activities in the unceded Lubicon territory;
4. That the participants of this meeting will monitor the actions of both the forestry company Daishowa and the Canadian governments regarding the protection of the unceded Lubicon territory and will appropriate actions against the Canadian governments and Daishowa as necessary to ensure a future for the environment and the aboriginal people of the Lubicon territory.
Passed: By consensus
Jokkmokk, Sweden, October 4th, 1992
Chairperson of the meeting:
Swedish Society for the Conservation of Nature