Akwesasne Mohawk Territory – Onerahtohkó:wa (May) 30, 2014

As titleholders and leaders of our Mohawk Nation clan families, we wish to share our position concerning the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe’s announcement that it has achieved a land claim settlement with New York State and St. Lawrence County.

Firstly, we were extremely surprised and dismayed to discover that the St. Regis Mohawk Tribal Council announced that the Mohawk Nation Council of Chiefs has supported this settlement.  We would like to take this time to point out that this settlement was never presented at any session of the Mohawk Nation Council of Chiefs, nor has the Mohawk Nation leadership agreed in council to support any version of the settlement.  Considering that our political system is based upon consensus and that no resolution has been passed to support the settlement.

At the heart of this claim is the fraudulent Seven Nations’ Treaty of 1796, which willfully concedes all Mohawk lands in New York State.  Ultimately, we feel that by endorsing this land claim settlement, we would be inadvertently recognizing the validity of this treaty and would further acknowledge that we have relinquished our legal right to all Mohawk land in New York State.

As the custodians of Haudenosaunee sovereignty in Mohawk Nation Territory, we must consider the territorial integrity of our overall ancestral homeland and will not jeopardize our historic claim to the nine million acres of traditional Kanien’kehá:ka territory.