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Idle No More rally held in Bemidji

BEMIDJI – A rally in support of the “Idle No More” movement took place at Paul Bunyan Mall Wednesday night.

The movement was sparked by a bill making its way through the Canadian government that would affect land and water management and native people there, according to the organization’s website.

“Idle No More has come to symbolize and be the platform to voice the refusal of First Nations people to be ignored any further by any other Canadian government,” its website reads.

Chief Theresa Spence has been on a hunger strike in Ontario for more than two weeks as she requests to meet with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper to discuss issues affecting natives.

The event at Paul Bunyan Mall drew more than one hundred people, who watched as Native Americans danced and beat drums.

Similar protests have occurred across the globe. According to the Indian Country Today Media Network, another protest is scheduled for Friday in New York City. In addition, Mishkomekinaak Ikwe began traveling from International Falls to Washington D.C. Thursday to urge President Obama to ask Harper to meet with native leaders.