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Nov 08, 2023
Loss of land caused economic, cultural, mental and physical suffering, Dakota Tipi lawsuit says
Dakota Tipi First Nation has launched a $475-million lawsuit against the federal government, alleging a former military base turned aerospace centre in south-central Manitoba exists on part of the First Nation’s ancestral land that was never surrendered to the Crown.
The First Nation, southwest of Portage la Prairie, Man., claims Canada breached its constitutional and fiduciary obligations after seizing the land that is now home to the aerospace centre Southport — also located just outside Portage la Prairie — without proper consultation.
The land in question, which includes the historic Old Sioux Village, is considered ancestral territory of the Dakota and was used exclusively by the nation “since time immemorial,” according to the statement of claim filed at the Manitoba Court of King’s Bench on Nov. 6, which names the Attorney General of Canada as defendant.
Oral and written history prove that the village and surrounding areas had hundreds of teepees and harvesting grounds, along with ceremonial, burial and trade sites, the statement of claim says.