Canada transfers territorial lands to Nunavut in historic agreement

Flag of Nunavut, Wikimedia Commons. CC License.
Flag of Nunavut, Wikimedia Commons. CC License.

Canada is making the largest land transfer in the nation’s history as the territory of Nunavut takes another stride toward self-determination.

On January 18th, federal and territorial leaders signed the Nunavut Lands and Resources Devolution Agreement, marking a significant milestone in the history of the territory. The agreement was witnessed by Inuit leaders, dignitaries, and local citizens.

“This is a historic day for Nunavut and for Canada,” said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

“As we walk this shared path of reconciliation, the most important decisions to impact Nunavut will be made in Nunavut, by its people, and for its people.”

Nunavut and its residents will now be able to make decisions about how public lands, freshwater, and non-renewable resources are used in the territory, and reap the benefits of responsible and sustainable resource development.

“Namminiqsurniq, or devolution, is one more step towards the vision of a self-reliant Nunavut,” said P.J. Akeeagok, Premier of Nunavut.

“While it has taken generations of our leaders to achieve this work, today’s signing of the devolution agreement is primarily for young Nunavummiut across our territory.”

Nunavut was incorporated as a territory within Canada on April 1, 1999. The Devolution Agreement delivers on commitments made in Canada’s Arctic and Northern Policy Framework.

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