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BREAKING NEWS - More than 100 Supporters Blockade TransCanada Highway

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  • BREAKING NEWS - More than 100 Supporters Blockade TransCanada Highway

    Attention News Editors:
    BREAKING NEWS - More than 100 Supporters Blockade TransCanada Highway in
    Support of Grassy Narrows
    High-res, professional quality photos and B-roll available.

    Video available on site.

    KENORA, ON, July 13 /CNW/ - A hundred Grassy Narrows supporters from

    across North America are shutting down the TransCanada Highway in Northern

    Ontraio in solidarity with the Grassy Narrows' call to halt clearcut logging

    by Weyerhaeuser Corp. and Abitibi Consolidated Inc. on their traditional lands

    in the boreal forest.

    Supporters erected a 30 foot tall tripod on the highway and perched on

    the top, while others locked themselves to cement filled oil drums and even

    the axle of a Weyerhaeuser log truck. The action stopped log trucks carrying

    hardwood trees logged on Grassy Narrows traditional territory on their way to

    the Weyerhaeuser Trus Joist Timberstrand mill in Kenora. Their banners read

    "Save Grassy Narrows' Boreal Forest," "Wake up Weyerhaeuser, Defend Native

    Rights, Defend Ancient Forests," "Freedom for Grassy Narrows; No logging

    without consent."

    For over a decade Grassy Narrows has been working to end clearcut logging

    on their Traditional Territory. The Ontario McGuinty government, Weyerhaeuser

    and Abitibi failed to respond to years of official complaints, environmental

    assessment requests, negotiations, and public protest which gave rise to a

    blockade that has continued for more than three years. This action by the

    Rainforest Action Network, Grassy Narrows community members, supporters from

    other Native communities, and other supporters of social and ecological

    justice from across North America marks the latest development in the growing

    international response to a call to action issued by Grassy Narrows community

    leaders in late February, 2006.

    "Weyerhaeuser is destroying an ancient way of life and an ecosystem vital

    to our plant's health while the McGuinty government fails to act to resolve

    this crisis," said David Sone, an Organizer for Rainforest Action Network's

    Old Growth campaign. "We stand proudly with the people of Grassy Narrows and

    will continue to help protect the Boreal Forest and defend their Traditional


    "The clear-cutting of the land is an attack on our people," said Roberta

    Keesick, a Grassy Narrows blockader, grandmother and trapper. "The land is the

    basis of who we are. Our culture is a land-based culture, and the destruction

    of the land is the destruction of our culture. Weyerhaeuser and the McGuinty

    government don't want us on the land, they want us out of the way so they can

    take the resources. We can't allow them to carry on with this cultural


    Last month, the Superior Court of Ontario ordered the province to pay

    legal costs associated with a lawsuit challenging clear-cut logging on the

    community's traditional lands. However, proceedings for the three- year old

    legal action will not be heard until late 2008. Meanwhile, clearcutting

    continues unabated. In a recent submission to the United Nations, Amnesty

    International argued that current logging on Grassy Narrows' traditional land

    violates the community's indigenous rights to self-determination and culture

    and fails to meet international standards of "free prior and informed consent"

    for development on traditional Indigenous lands.

    For more information go to

    Rainforest Action Network campaigns for the forests, their inhabitants,

    and the natural systems that sustain life by transforming the global

    marketplace through education, grassroots organizing, and non-violent direct


    For further information: David Sone, Rainforest Action Network, (On

    site): (416) 452-4199; Leah Henderson, (On Site): (647) 883-5983; Brianna Cayo

    Cotter, RAN: (415) 305-1943; Joe B. Fobister (Grassy Narrows Spokesperson) -

    work: (807) 925 2071, home: (807) 925 2745

    RAINFOREST ACTION NETWORK - More on this organization _
    News Releases_ (
    (1) _
    Photo Archive_ (
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