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Standing Buffalo Dakota Nation celebrates anniversary of Declaration

Members of Standing Buffalo Dakota Nation celebrated the one year anniversary of the nation's Declaration. (Angela Stewart / CTV News) Members of Standing Buffalo Dakota Nation celebrated the one year anniversary of the nation's Declaration. (Angela Stewart / CTV News)
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Fort Qu'Appelle, Sask. -

A traditional song and dance was just the beginning of a big day for Standing Buffalo Dakota Nation in Fort Qu’Appelle Thursday.

Members of the band gathered to celebrate the one year anniversary of the nation’s Declaration, which asserts the nation’s sovereign right to govern itself.

A signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) also took place, which is another step towards reconciliation.

"We are a very proud nation. Signing the MOU with Canada today is an affirmation of our rights and our sovereignty,” said Chief Rodger Redman.

The Declaration was signed a year ago by the band and it emphasizes the importance of diplomacy for the nation including coexisting peacefully and protection of their ceremonies and laws.

"It took a lot of work and time and energy to be acknowledged as a sovereign nation in Canada. Our present leadership has done they worked very very hard and with the elders and putting together everything that you see here today is the end result,” said Dianne Goodwill, a knowledge peacekeeper for the nation.

The anniversary was also a chance to reflect on the nation’s journey and its connection to the land.

Members of Standing Buffalo Dakota Nation celebrated the one year anniversary of the nation's Declaration. (Angela Stewart / CTV News)

"What we do today is for the future of our next generation, not only to them but to our relatives, the two legged, the four legged, the winged ones. We are connected to that,” added Chief Redman.

The band says a lot of work still needs to be done but they look forward to the next steps of reconciliation.

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