Activists call on premier to free native protesters

 

Activists call on premier to free native protesters

 

The Canadian Press

Copyright (c) 2008 The Hamilton Spectator.

 

TORONTO

 

Author Margaret Atwood, actor Cathy Jones and musician Sarah Harmer are among 20 prominent Canadians calling on Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty to immediately free seven jailed aboriginal leaders and stop controversial mineral exploration across the province.

 

In a letter being sent to McGuinty today, the group of activists, which also includes former United Nations ambassador Stephen Lewis, pleads the case of jailed aboriginals trying to stop mining in their traditional northern territory, and says mining shouldn't take precedence over people's homes and health.

 

Six members of the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) First Nation, including Chief Donny Morris and Deputy Chief Jack MacKay, were sentenced to six months in jail in December 2007 after ignoring an injunction allowing Platinex to start drilling on traditional aboriginal territory 600 kilometres north of Thunder Bay