KJIPUKTUK (Halifax) – “I am so excited to see you all here to experience the very first Mi’kmaw self-regulated treaty sale in Nova Scotia,” Dr. Cheryl Maloney of Sipekne’katik told Haligonians looking to pick up some treaty lobster.
The sale occurred this morning in front of Province House, with a long line-up extending all the way around the corner.
In the past buyers of lobster caught by Mi’kmaq fishers exercising their treaty right have been charged under a provincial regulation.
Today’s event was organized to highlight the existence of this regulation. How can Mi’kmaq exercise their legal right to fish and trade outside of the Department of Fisheries & Oceans licensing regime if such trade is deemed illegal, the fishers ask.
The self-regulated fishery is conducted while under attack by several hundred white commercial fishers in Digby County who have engaged in racist mob attacks and other shameful acts of violence.
The Mi’kmaq fishers have seen their boats burned down, their traps pulled, cars set on fire, tires slashed and so forth, while RCMP has been reluctant to step in.
Today’s event made clear that many Nova Scotians don’t condone these acts of terror.
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