Canada: Battle at a Barricade

Battle at a Barricade

Nearly 200 defiant Mohawks, some wearing war paint, fought a brief but furious gun battle with 100 armed Quebec police officers that resulted in one police death last week near the village of Oka, 18 miles west of Montreal.

Since 1947, the 1,000 Mohawks of the Kanesatake reserve near Oka have claimed land that the village wants to use to expand a golf course. The federal government in Ottawa rejected that claim in 1986, but the Mohawks demanded further negotiations and last March finally set up a blockade to prevent the extension.

Police ignored the roadblock for months, but finally acted...

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