October 27, 2021

The Queens County Citizen

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Remains of 215 children: Evidence of genocide?

Remains of 215 children: Evidence of genocide?

(Ottawa) The discovery of the remains of 215 indigenous children in an anonymous cemetery in British Columbia has led to a debate over the federal boarding school system. In the opinion of some experts, this meets the definition of genocide in international law.


Man Alhmidi
The Canadian Press

Pamela Palmer, a law professor at Ryerson University in Toronto, believes that the definition of “genocide” at the United Nations Conference applies to Canada’s action against indigenous peoples.

Forcible transfer of children from one group to another

According to this meeting, genocide occurs when members of a group are killed, subjected to serious injuries to their physical or mental integrity, or subject to calculated living conditions to bring about total or partial destruction of their body. The UN definition also – and specifically – includes “forcible transfer of children from one group to another”.

To commit genocide, Canada must be convicted of only one of the five acts sanctioned by the UN General Assembly, “with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, ethnic or religious group.” However, Professor Palmotor Canada is believed to be guilty of five acts, including “preventing births in a group”.

“It simply came to our notice then that this was not the case in any country where genocide had taken place […] Anonymous graves of innocent children, ”M.To me Palmotor. “The first countries across the country reported mass graves and anonymous graves of children who were murdered, starved, abused or died.”

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“Clear proof,” said the chef’s chief

First Nations Assembly National Chief Perry Bellegarde said Tuesday that the residential school system was a genocide and the anonymous tombs found in the Kamloops‌ were clear evidence of this. “I urge all governments to commit themselves to supporting the first countries seeking a comprehensive investigation into former residential school premises and to taking all possible measures to hold criminals accountable.”

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission released its report in 2015 after studying the church-run and federally-sponsored residential schools that have been operating in Canada for 120 years. The report describes “physical genocide” as the “killing of members of a targeted group”, while “cultural genocide” means “destroying those structures and practices that allow a group to live as a group”.

Cultural carnage?

David McDonald, a professor of political science at the University of Guelph in Ontario, recalled that the commission could find a “cultural carnage”, but not a genocide according to the UN convention, because it had no authority to submit legal arguments. “Their job was to gather information, but the government did not allow them to find out if any of the laws had been violated,” Professor McDonald said.

In contrast, Professor McDonald argues that the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls was created under the Inquiry Act, which allowed witnesses to withdraw and make legal decisions. And in 2019, the inquiry concluded in its massive report that Canada had deliberately and systematically violated homeland rights, and that its actions were in fact responsible for the carnage.

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Following the release of the report, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau accepted the resolution of this “genocide”, but argued that Canada should focus on concrete steps to address the situation, not words.

Already a verdict

Professor Palmer, a Mickmack lawyer, believes Canada has committed a historic and ongoing genocide by prosecuting missing and murdered women. “Not from an educational or political point of view – this is not a question of theory: it is in fact a legal assessment conducted by a national inquiry,” she argued.

She believes Canada is still committing genocide. “Aboriginal children are three times more likely to be in foster care than residential schools,” she says. “Children in foster care here suffer from high levels of physical and sexual abuse, lack of education, lack of access to health care, psychological abuse, assaults on their culture and today two-thirds of those in prisons come from aboriginals. One-fifth comes from residential schools.”

Bruno Gelinas-Foucher, a law professor at the University of Montreal and a doctoral candidate in international law at the University of Montreal, said that if the court ruled that the country had committed crimes against humanity or genocide, Canada could face legal consequences for its actions against indigenous peoples. Cambridge. He reminded that Canada has already criminalized crimes committed against genocide and humanity in its national legal system, but it is not up to federal prosecutors to open a criminal investigation.

The story was produced with financial support from the Facebook stock exchanges and The Canadian Press for News.