Photo: Adrian Wyld The Canadian Press Indigenous Services Minister Patty Hajdu said every Liberal government is different.
The Canadian Press in Ottawa
The current federal Liberal government is trying to distance itself from the one that allegedly conspired with Australia to weaken the United Nations text on indigenous peoples in the early 2000s.
Newly released Australian cabinet documents from 2003 show the two countries worked together to propose a softer version of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
The idea of a more state-friendly version arose from the Liberal government of Jean Chrétien, the documents show, and was supported by Australia at the time.
Indigenous Services Minister Patty Hajdu says every Liberal government is different, but every act of colonization and attack on Indigenous rights leaves a “stain” on the country.
The documents, first leaked by the newspaper The Guardian, show that the two governments worked in secret to weaken the declaration, while recognizing that their efforts would face strong indigenous opposition.
The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples was amended before being adopted by the UN in 2007, and the Liberal government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau passed legislation in 2021 to put into effect.