The road to Nemiah Valley, west of Williams Lake. Angie Mindus photo

Justin Trudeau to visit B.C., exonerate First Nations war chiefs who were hanged

The Prime Minister is expected to personally exonerate the chiefs in a visit near Williams Lake

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is set to visit a B.C. First Nation near Williams Lake this Friday and formally exonerate six war chiefs who were hanged in the 1860s.

“This event is a healing event for the Tsilhqot’in people,” the Tŝilhqot’in National Government said in a news release on Tuesday regarding the long-awaited meeting. “All Tsilhqot’in are invited to attend.”

Six Tsilhqot’in chiefs were hanged by the colonial government in 1864 and 1865, at a location just north of Quesnel’s hospital. Five of the chiefs were hanged on Oct. 26, 1864, with the sixth executed in New Westminster the following year.

In March, Trudeau stood in up Parliament, apologized to the Tsilhqot’in Nation and exonerated the chiefs.

The event is by invite only and will take place on Tsilhqot’in Title lands in the Nemiah Valley.

Read more: Tsilhqot’in Nations to commemorate hanged chiefs with memorial in Quesnel

Trudeau made an impression on the current chiefs when he detoured from his wildfire tour in Williams Lake in the summer of 2017 to meet with the First Nations leaders.

TNG members were busy hunting this week for the traditional feast.


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