POLITICS

Innu warn of serious measures to get money for iron ore mining on Quebec land

10/01/2014 04:31 EDT | Updated 12/01/2014 05:59 EST
MONTREAL - The Innu of Maliotenam and Schefferville say they'll use all means necessary — including civil disobedience — to make sure they are compensated by IOC-Rio Tinto for iron ore mining on their territory since 1954.

Real McKenzie, leader of the Matimekush-Lac John Innu of Schefferville, made the comments at a news conference today outside the IOC-Rio Tinto office in Montreal, where an Innu delegation urged the company to listen to reason.

McKenzie and Mike McKenzie, chief of the Uashat mak Mani-utenam Innu of Maliotenam, brought two huge iron ore stones to the office as part of their protest.

The stones, dubbed "the stones of shame," were given to the Innu in 1970 by then-prime minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau to mark the centenary of the discovery of rich iron ore deposits in Schefferville.

Mike McKenzie says that's all the Innu have ever received and now it's time for the mining company to pay up.

He says settlements have been reached with four other companies on Innu territory but four years of negotiations with IOC-Rio Tinto have been fruitless.