Ottawa (21 May 2013) – The Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) has announced that it will hold its quadrennial General Assembly in Inuvik in July 2014.
Inuit delegates, musicians, artists, and others will gather from Russia, Greenland, Alaska, and Canada to celebrate the unity of Inuit and map out the path forward for the organization over the subsequent four years.
This is the first time in 12 years that Canadian Inuit will host the quadrennial pan-Arctic celebration and time of policy-making. Duane Smith, ICC Canada president, said, “Canadian Inuit have a great opportunity to show not only other Inuit, but the whole world, what great hosts we can be”.
ICC Canada has started the preparation for this major event, which will be locally hosted by the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation (IRC). IRC Chair & CEO, Nellie Cournoyea, said she was very happy to take on this task. “We see the Inuit Circumpolar Council as a great body that unites all Inuit and undertakes work internationally that benefits us all at the local and regional levels”. Ms. Cournoyea added that it will be a lot of work but “we are up to the task and we look forward to many guests coming to help celebrate”.
It is expected that a declaration, the Inuvik Declaration, will be developed by Inuit delegates which will map out for ICC a four-year mandate to advocate on behalf of all Inuit from across the circumpolar world, both at the Arctic Council and elsewhere.
This is the second time that Inuvik will have hosted the GA. It was also held there in 1992. “Much has changed in the Arctic since then”, Mr. Smith concluded, “as we now have the whole world looking our way wanting our resources and our transportation routes”.
The Inuit Circumpolar Council was founded in 1977 in Barrow, Alaska and rotates its GA and Office of the Chair from country to country every four years.
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