Press Releases

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2021

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2020

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2019

Inuit Circumpolar Council Welcomes UN General Assembly proclamation of a Decade of Indigenous Peoples’ Language

The United Nations General Assembly has adopted a significant resolution that ”Proclaims the period 2022–2032 as the International Decade of Indigenous Languages, to draw attention to the critical loss of indigenous languages and the urgent need to preserve, revitalize and promote indigenous languages and to take urgent steps at the national and international levels.

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2018

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2017

Inuit Day 2017

Bonn, Germany and Ottawa, Canada Today Inuit celebrate unity and solidarity. Forty years ago Eben Hopson, the visionary Inupiat leader from Utqiagvik (Barrow), Alaska called on Inuit from Alaska, Canada, Greenland and Chukotka to work together in support each other, to defend Inuit Rights, and to make certain no Inuit community is left behind as […]

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2016

Four Countries, One People: Inuit Strengthen Arctic Co-operation

Good afternoon (if past noon). My name is Nancy Karetak-Lindell. I was born and raised on the shores of western Hudson Bay in Arviat in the Kivaliq region of Nunavut. I was the Member of Parliament for Nunavut from 1997 to 2008 and since then I have served my community in many capacities. It is […]

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November 7th – Inuit Day

November 7, 2016 – Iqaluit, Nunavut – Okalik Eegeesiak, ICC Chair, invites you to celebrate the Arctic and those who call it home on November 7th for “Inuit Day”. The 2006 Utqiaġvik Declaration instructedICC to annually proclaim November 7th, the birth date of ICC visionary, Eben Hopson Sr., as “Inuit Day”. Eben Hopson was one […]

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2015

Progress Made in Paris: ICC Urges Action Now

December 13, 2015 – Ottawa – The climate change treaty finalized today in Paris is “historic,” said Okalik Eegeesiak, Chair of the Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) “but we recognize the compromise in the text.” Eegeesiak led the circumpolar Inuit delegation to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change COP 21 talks in Paris and […]

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“1.5 Degrees is More Than Enough” Arctic and Island States Call on Leaders to Agree to Deep Cuts to Greenhouse Gas Emissions

December 9, 2015 – Paris, France – Voices from some of the world’s coldest and hottest regions were raised in unison today calling for ambitious greenhouse gas emissions targets that would limit the average global temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius. The call was issued by Indigenous Peoples’ representatives from the Inuit Circumpolar Council, Saami […]

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ICC Canada and ITK Urges the Government to Enhance the Northern Contaminants Program

December 8, 2015 – Vancouver, Canada – Duane Smith, President of the Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) Canada is in Vancouver, British Columbia attending the Northern Contaminants Program Results Workshop. The NCP Results Workshop, held every other year, is the main venue for Canadian scientists, indigenous peoples and policy-makers to focus attention on the breadth of […]

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2014

Inuit Views Presented At The Economist’s Canada Summit

TORONTO – 3 December 2014 – Duane Smith of the Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) was invited by The Economist to present the views of Inuit at its premier Canadian event held here today, called The Canada Summit: Confronting the Big Questions. The event’s main panellists and speakers included Alberta’sPremier Jim Prentice and Bank of Canada […]

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Inuit inspired by strong global support at high level UN indigenous peoples conference; disappointed with dissenting voice from Canadian government

New York – 25 September 2014 – The Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) expressed its excitement today over an Outcome Document emanating from the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples, a high level United Nations event that ended yesterday in New York. ICC Canada President, Duane Ningaqsiq Smith, said he is very pleased that after several months […]

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Inuit inspired by strong global support at high level UN indigenous peoples conference; disappointed with dissenting voice from Canadian government

New York – 25 September 2014 – The Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) expressed its excitement today over an Outcome Document emanating from the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples, a high level United Nations event that ended yesterday in New York. ICC Canada President, Duane Ningaqsiq Smith, said he is very pleased that after several months […]

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2013

Global mercury treaty adopted, mentions vulnerability of Arctic ecosystems and indigenous communities

22 January, 2013 – Geneva, Switzerland/Ottawa, Canada After a week with long negotiations that lasted throughout several nights, ICC participants were pleased to see the adoption of a global mercury treaty (the ‘Minamata Convention on Mercury’) at the 5th Intergovernmental Negotiation Committee (INC) of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) on Saturday, January 19th 2013, […]

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2012

Inuit Circumpolar Council Celebrates Inuit Day

OTTAWA – 7 November 2012 –Duane Smith, President of Inuit Circumpolar Council Canada today called on all Inuit and all Canadians to celebrate Inuit Day. In 2006 ICC General Assembly in Barrow, Alaska instructed ICC to “annually proclaim the November 7th birth date of ICC visionary, Eben Hopson, Sr., as Inuit Day, and to urge […]

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2011

Inuit Deeply Concerned about Canada’s Decision to Withdraw from Kyoto

15 December, 2011 –Ottawa, Canada – Inuit are Deeply Concerned About Canada’s Decision towithdraw from Kyoto. ICC Canada’s President, Duane Smith, said, “The news that Canada has withdrawn from Kyoto comes as a great disappointment to Inuit in Canada and the circumpolar world. In the past, Canada was seen as a global leader on many […]

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Circumpolar Inuit to Global Leaders in Durban: Don’t Abandon Kyoto

06 December, 2011 – Ottawa, Canada – The Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC), representing Inuit from Greenland, Canada, Alaska, and Chukotka, Russia, released a document today addressed to global leaders assembled for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change meetings in Durban. The Inuit Call to Global Leaders highlights the importance of strong commitments from […]

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2010

Circumpolar Inuit to Global Leaders in Cancun: Strong Action on Arctic Climate Change Urgently Needed

3 December, 2010 – Cancun, Mexico – The Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC), representing Inuit from Greenland, Canada, Alaska, and Chukotka, Russia, released a document today urging global leaders assembled for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference in Cancun to take strong action to prevent further impacts of climate change in the Arctic. […]

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Inuit Call on Global Leaders at CoP 16: Help us Sustain our Homeland – Take Immediate Action on Climate Change

November 29, 2010 – The Inuit Circumpolar Council supports the Arctic Council Statement to the UNFCCC CoP 16 that states,“Combating climate change is an urgent common challenge for the international community and requiresimmediate global action”. The Inuit Circumpolar Council welcomed the UNFCCC Copenhagen Accord,supporting the urgency for Action but is disappointed that not enough “action” […]

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2009

Inuit Call to Global Leaders: Act Now on Climate Change in the Arctic

— November 13, 2009 — The Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) is an indigenous peoples’ organization, founded in 1977 to promote and celebrate the unity of 160,000 Inuit from Alaska, Canada, Greenland, and Russia. As the international voice of Inuit, ICC is calling upon global leaders at the December UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties […]

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2008

Pan-Inuit Sovereignty Summit To Convene In November

November 29, 2008, Ilulissat, Greenland – Aqqaluk Lynge, President of the Greenland chapter of the Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) as well as ICC Vice Chair, told foreign ministers gathered here yesterday from Norway, Denmark, USA, and Canada that much of the Arctic belongs to Inuit. He stressed the importance of including Inuit in any negotiations […]

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Arctic Sovereignty Begins with Inuit: Circumpolar Inuit Commit to Development of ‘Inuit Declaration on Sovereignty in the Arctic’

10 November 2008 – Ottawa, Ontario – Inuit leaders from Greenland, Alaska, and Canada met in Kuujjuaq last week and agreed to develop an ‘Inuit Declaration on Sovereignty in the Arctic’. In advance of the Declaration the leaders also approved the attached Statement. “On behalf of ICC and Circumpolar leaders, we are pleased with our […]

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2007

Indigenous people describe real perils of global warming

December 14, 2007 NUSA DUA, INDONESIA Indigenous people, including Canadian Inuit and Indian leaders, are emerging as some of the top stars of the Bali climate-change conference. From the Arctic to the South Pacific islands, indigenous people said they are among the first to suffer the worst effects of global warming. They drew connections between the planet’s north and south, describing how […]

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Inuit Leader Announces Indigenous Peoples Global Summit on Climate Change

Bali, 11 December 2007 Inuit leader and chair of the Inuit Circumpolar Council, Ms Patricia Cochran, has announced at the UN Climate Change Conference in Bali that the Inuit Circumpolar Council will host an Indigenous Peoples Global Summit on Climate Change in 2009. Ms Cochran said the global summit to be held in Alaska in […]

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Inuit Leaders at Bali Climate Change Conference Calling for Inclusion

Bali, 10 December 2007  Inuit leaders are attending the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bali to meet with government leaders and UN officials, explaining to them how Inuit are trying to cope with the effects of climate change. The Inuit leadership is demanding that Inuit concerns, along with other indigenous peoples, will be part […]

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2006

Inuit of Canada Condemn UN Vote to Postpone Decision on the Adoption of International Declaration Supporting Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Canadian Inuit leader states: “A dark day for aboriginal Canadians and all indigenous peoples worldwide” Ottawa, 29 November 2006 The Inuit of Canada today condemned the split vote by the United Nations General Assembly (GA) to postpone consideration of the adoption of the Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The UN Human Rights Council […]

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ICC Canada President Claims Partial Victory at Nairobi Climate Change Talks

Inuvik – Tuesday, 21 November 2006 After international climate change negotiations wound up last week, and as ministers from around the world returned to their respective countries, Duane Smith, the President of the Inuit Circumpolar Council (Canada), expressed his disappointment that the Canadian government did not stand in solidarity with other nation states in committing […]

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ICC Canada Applauds Arctic Sovereignty Assertion by the Prime Minister and Calls for an Arctic Component to Canadas Climate Change Plan

Ottawa, August 11, 2006 Mr. Duane Smith, President of the Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) Canada today applauded the Prime Minister, visiting Iqaluit, for initiating Operation Lancaster, a major deployment of Canadas armed forces in the Canadian Eastern Arctic to bolster Canadas sovereignty over the Northwest Passage. He also applauded the Prime Ministers commitment to expand […]

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2005

Inuit Petition Inter-American Commission On Human Rights To Oppose Climate Change Caused By The United States Of America

December 7, 2005 Contact: Paul Crowley, ICC 613-323-0212 Terry Fenge, ICC 613-762-8999 MONTREAL Ms. Sheila Watt-Cloutier, the elected Chair of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference (ICC), today submitted a petition to the Washington DC-based Inter-American Commission on Human Rights seeking relief from violations of the human rights of Inuit resulting from global warming caused by greenhouse […]

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A Renewed ICC at Alaska General Assembly in 2006

Montreal, 4 December 2005 Amidst the UN Climate Change Conference being held here, the Executive Council of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference (ICC) met to sketch out the details for its 2006 General Assembly, which will be held in Barrow, Alaska. The executive council will be proposing to the 72 Inuit delegates from Russia, Alaska, Canada […]

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Sheila Watt-Cloutier Awarded The Governor General’s Inaugural Northern Medal

September 23, 2005, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada Sheila Watt-Cloutier, Chair of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference received the first Governor General’s Northern Medal yesterday in a ceremony that took place at Rideau Hall. Her Excellency the Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, Governor General of Canada, praised Ms. Watt-Cloutier as “an eloquent spokesperson for the North and an advocate […]

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2004

Inuit Feast On Traditional Food In Celebration Of The Stockholm Convention

May 17, 2004, Iqaluit, Nunavut Inuit leaders, elders, community members and the former Chair of the International Negotiating Committee, Dr. John Buccini, celebrated the entry into force today of the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs), with a traditional feast of seal, caribou, whale and char. The Inuit Circumpolar Conference (ICC) was a key […]

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Communiqu

Ottawa April 21, 2004 Sheila Watt-Cloutier, Chair of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference (ICC), today thanked the National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation particularly its Founding President John Kim Bell, and the selection jury for her 2004 National Aboriginal Achievement Award. The award was presented by Paul Okalik, Premier of Nunavut, at a ceremony in Calgary on April […]

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Inuit Circumpolar conference provides testimony on impacts of climate change to the U.S. Senate Committee

March 3, 2004 On Tuesday March 3, 2004, Sheila Watt-Cloutier, Chair of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference, provided written testimony to the United States Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation about the threat posed by climate change to Inuit. Ms. Watt-Cloutiers written testimony was referred to repeatedly by the Chairman, Senator John McCain, as the […]

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2003

Climate Change in the Arctic: Human Rights of Inuit Interconnected with the World

December 10, 2003 Milan, ItalySheila Watt-Cloutier, the elected Chair of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference (ICC), spoke today to media, non-governmental organizations, and states attending the ninth Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Milan, Italy. Representing the 155,000 Inuit who live in Alaska, Canada, Greenland, and Chukotka in theFar East of the Russian Federation and living in Iqaluit, the […]

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Renewed Spirit of Hope, Energy, and Resilience Among Inuit in Chukotka

Ottawa, July 3, 2003 Returning on June 24, 2003 from Provideniya and New Chaplino in Chukotka in the Russian Far East, Ms. Sheila Watt-Cloutier, the Iqaluit-based Chair of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference, reported a renewed sense of hope and optimism among the region’s 1,500 Inuit, and an eagerness to work closely with Inuit organizations in […]

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Executive Council Meeting, Nome, Alaska, June 27, 2003

June 27, 2003 Nome, Alaska – The Executive Council of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference (ICC), an organization representing 155,000 Inuit in Greenland, Canada, Alaska and Chukotka, Russia, continues to be diligent in addressing its concerns about the ability of future generations to maintain the Inuit culture in the face of the many globalized pressures that […]

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2002

Arctic Dimension Absent From WSSD

Johannesburg, South Africa Monday September 2, 2002  Inuit leaders are in Johannesburg to press for the recognition of Arctic concerns on the global agenda, but are deeply concerned the Arctic will be ignored in the final political declaration. There were limited opportunities at WSSD to voice concerns of the sustainability of Inuit culture and the […]

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Inuit Circumpolar Conference Concludes 9th General Assembly in Kuujjuaq, Nunavik

Kuujjuaq Declaration Passed Sheila Watt-Cloutier Elected ICC Chair Kuujjuaq – Thursday August 15, 2002 The 9th General Assembly of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference (ICC), representing Inuit of Russia, Alaska, Canada, and Greenland, concluded today in Kuujjuaq following four days of deliberation on topics of concern to the Inuit world. Celebrating its 25th anniversary ICC elected a […]

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Inuit Circumpolar Conference Holds 9th General Assembly In Kuujjuaq, Nunavik 25th Anniversary Of ICC Celebrated

Kuujjuaq, Monday August 12, 2002 Inuit in Kuujjuaq are playing host to fellow Inuit in Canada, Greenland, Alaska, and Russia. The Inuit Circumpolar Conference General Assembly, held every four years, is the largest gathering of Inuit leaders in the world. The theme of this years conference is: Inuit Voice Enlightening the World. Aqqaluk Lynge, President of […]

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2001

Inuit Applaud Canada’s Leadership And The Global Effort To Eliminate Toxic Substances

Stockholm, Sweden, May 23, 2001 Sheila Watt-Cloutier, President of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference (Canada) and Vice-President of Inuit Circumpolar Conference, and delegates of 110 countries took part in the signing ceremony today for the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs). Ms. Watt-Cloutier congratulated David Anderson, Canada’s Minister of the Environment on signing and ratifying the […]

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Inuit Applaud The Announcement That The Government Of Canada Will Sign And Ratify The Global Convention On Persistent Organic Pollutants.

Ottawa And Iqaluit, May 9, 2001 Sheila Watt-Cloutier, President of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference Canada and Vice-President of ICC, today congratulated the Prime Minister and ministers of Environment and Foreign Affairs and International Trade upon the announcement that Canada would sign and ratify the global convention on persistent organic pollutants (POPs) at a ceremony in […]

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Canadian Inuk Leader Writes To US And Canadian Industrial And Waste Disposal Facilities Regarding Dioxin Pollution In Northern Canada.

Ottawa February 26, 2001 Ms. Sheila Watt-Cloutier, President of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference Canada and Vice-President of Inuit Circumpolar Conference, today released the text of letters sent to ten industrial plants and medical and municipal waste facilities in the United States and Canada. These facilities release dioxins (by products of combustion, especially of plastics and […]

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