Ojibwe fishermen stage protest to support 1855 treaty rights

Members of the Leech Lake Band and the White Earth Band began a treaty rights protest today on Lake Bemidji.

The tribes say they have fishing rights off the reservation under an 1855 treaty. But while tribal leaders want to negotiate with the state, some members decided to test the waters on their own.

"We are gathering to send a message to the state to stop abusing the treaty of 1855 and stop harassing tribal members who are exercising their treaty rights," said White Earth activist Robert Shimek, The Bemidji Pioneer reported.

So far, the activists haven't run into state conservation officers, the paper reported. The official state season starts tomorrow.

Get the Story:
Protest report: Gillnets set on Lake Bemidji; no DNR yet (The Bemidji Pioneer 5/14)
Minnesota Chippewa rally for rights under 1855 treaty (The Bemidji Pioneer 5/14)
Minnesota Chippewa treaty rights drive comes to a head (AP 5/14)

Related Stories:
Leech Lake fishermen plan treaty rights protest this Friday (5/11)
MPR: Great Anishinaabe Fish-Off still planned in Minnesota (05/04)
Ojibwe tribes request comanagement of treaty resources (4/27)
Column: White Earth leader prefers diplomacy on treaty (4/26)
Leech Lake Band won't take part in treaty rights protest (4/23)
Chippewa Tribe of Minnesota plans fishing rights protest (4/21)