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Province of British Columbia
For Immediate Release
October 23, 2014
Office of the Premier
Tsilhqot’in National Government
B.C. redresses wrongful hangings of Tsilhqot’in war chiefs

VICTORIA – This morning, Premier Christy Clark made a statement in the British Columbia legislative assembly apologizing for the wrongful hanging of six Tsilhqot’in war chiefs in 1864 and 1865, and stating the Province’s will to exonerate the chiefs to the extent of its ability.

Five chiefs were imprisoned, tried and executed in October 1864 after accepting an invitation to discuss terms of peace to end the Chilcotin War. A sixth chief was hanged the following year.

The statement fulfills a promise outlined in the Sept. 10, 2014, Letter of Understanding between the Tsilhqot’in National Government (TNG) and the Province of British Columbia.

Today’s actions by the Province are understood through a mutual agreement to address the healing that must occur around a difficult history of mistreatment, misrepresentation and lack of recognition of First Nations people within the Tsilhqot’in territory and rest of British Columbia.


Chief Joe Alphonse: Tribal Chairman of the Tsilhqot’in National Government

“This is an important day for the Tsilhqot'in - the Province of British Columbia has demonstrated leadership by exonerating our six Chiefs and starting the process of healing. We have much more work to do. We call on the Federal Government to rise to this historic opportunity as well, and take the same steps to exonerate these leaders that died for our people and our way of life. If Canada is ready to acknowledge the wrongs of the past, and build real and respectful relationships today, we can move from pain into opportunity, from a dark history into a future we can all be proud of. Together we can transform this province and this country.”

Premier Christy Clark

“Today marks a significant step toward reconciliation with the Tsilhqot’in Nation, and to a relationship of respect and recognition. Our government stood with members from all sides to apologize for wrongful acts, and commit ourselves to redressing them so that we can build a better future together.”

Media Contacts:
Myanna Desaulniers
Communication Coordinator
Tsilhqot’in National Government
778 836-0122
Sam Oliphant
Press Secretary
Office of the Premier
250 952-7252
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