"For decades the Rick Desautel had been told by courts and governments that his
people no longer exist in Canada.
But Desautel and others in his community in Washington state have long argued
that they are descendants of the Sinixt, an Indigenous people whose territory
once spanned Canada and the United States.
On Friday, Canada’s highest court agreed, ruling that Desautel and the 4,000
other members of the Colville Confederated Tribes in Washington state were
successors to the Sinixt – and as a result, that they enjoy constitutionally
protected Indigenous rights to hunt their traditional lands in Canada.
The closely watched court decision settled longstanding questions over the
status of the Sinixt, but it also has the potential to affirm hunting rights in
Canada for tens of thousands of Native Americans living in the US dispossessed
of traditional territories by an international border drawn hundreds of years
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