A loud No to agreement
The agreement between the American, Danish and the Greenlandic governments about the return of the Uummannaq peninsula near the Thule Airbase to Inughuit met harsh words from about 400 protesters in Nuuk
-Traitor! Don't sign the agreement! were some of the angry words shouted while Premier Hans Enoksen replied to criticism expressed in the peace rally arranged by Inuit Circumpolar Conference, Hingitaq 53 and Inuit Youth International by saying: -I will sign the agreement with pride!
The signing ceremony at the Hans Egedes house is the after math of the agreement solely negotiated by the Danish and the American authorities in September 2002.
Aqqaluk Lynge said in his speach outside the Greenlandic parlament building:-We demand that you respect the indigenous peoples rights and demand that the Agreement of the Defence of Greenland of 1951 be replaced by a new updated version. Before you accept the update, we don't want to accept the upgrade.
Nitta Lyberth, President of Inuit Youth International demanded that Premier Enoksen should reconsider his priorities and stop ruling without the consent of the people he is supposed to represent.
Hans Egede, the old colonizer watched carefully
The old stonehouse of Hans Egede was maybe not the most obvious place to mark an understanding between three very unequal people. But it was nevertheless the place Hans Enoksen had pointed out as the place to sign an agreement which should end 50 years of agony of The Inughuit. The agreement point out that the American Government is to be asked if any Greenlander living outside Avanersuaq Community should decide to go to Uummannaq Peninsula right beside Thule Airbase. After a short speach ny Mayor Naimanngitsoq Petersen, Maassannguaq Qujaukitsoq spoke as a representative of Hingitaq 53 and said:-The decisions taken without our consent must stop. We are not ignorants, don't treat us like we were ignorants! The deeply felt frustrations of not beeing able to take our own life in our hands must stop.
We Inughuit have the same rights and duties as the rest of you. If you feel that you are giving the land back in respect of all human rights, then do it, and then we will all be happy to take it all back.
Among the speakers were the President of Hunters and Fishermens Association of Greenland and the President of Nammineq, the Greenlandic Movement for Selfgovernment, Elisabeth Ravn Johansen.