Monday, August 07, 2006
UP IN CANADA, THE STRUGGLE OVER INDIAN LANDS CONTINUES
That Indian land dispute up in Canada is still going on and in fact got a bit tense today. For earlier articles and background put "Caledonia" in the search box at the top of this page and click on "search this blog" and you'll find a plethora of OD articles.
The following is from the CBC.
Rocks, golf balls fly as Ontario land-claims dispute reignites
About 100 people from the southern Ontario community of Caledonia exchanged fire — golf balls and rocks — with native protesters early Monday near the site of a five-month occupation over a land dispute.
A small group of residents gathered just after midnight to exchange verbal jabs with the protesters, an Ontario Provincial Police spokesman told the Canadian Press. But when the number of locals started to grow, the projectiles began to fly, said Const. Denis Harwood.
"We had two sides lined up and they were escalating to the point where things were starting to be thrown at each other," he said.
One resident, a protester and an OPP officer were hit during the exchange, but none were reported injured. Vehicles and property were also damaged, police said.
There have been periodic confrontations between local residents and the protesters since a small group from the Six Nations from the Grand River Territory reserve moved onto a construction site near Caledonia on Feb. 28.
They have argued that the land belongs to them as a result of an 18th-century treaty and should not be used for a housing development.
Harwood said the latest altercation was sparked by minor incidents during the previous day.
Police said some Six Nations youth cut the middle out of a Canadian flag and began taunting residents, who retaliated by putting up hand-made signs that offended some of the protesters.
The conflict over the land has attracted attention across the country.
At one point, protesters erected three roadblocks blocking traffic around Caledonia. They have since been removed.
The Ontario government has since purchased the housing site from the original developer, Henco Industries.
The provincial government is still trying to negotiate a peaceful end to the standoff.