07/08/2015 14:25 EDT | Updated 07/08/2016 01:12 EDT

Quebec native groups seeking oil and gas moratorium in Gulf of St. Lawrence

MONTREAL — The chiefs of three native groups in Quebec are asking the province to impose a 12-year moratorium on oil and gas exploration in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

They outlined their position at a news conference in Montreal as the Assembly of First Nations continued its annual meeting.

They are also asking federal party leaders to tell voters ahead of this fall's election where they stand on the protection of the Gulf from development.

The chiefs of the Innu, Mi'kmaq and Maliseet nations say the Quebec government recently announced it would lift the moratorium on oil and gas exploration in the region.

Mi'kmaq Chief Scott Martin says the moratorium is necessary, at least until environmental impact studies have been conducted.

Innu Chief Charles Pietacho added he will never accept royalties from oil and gas activity.


The Canadian Press