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Sámi Presidential Visit to Aotearoa October 2016

Media Advisory: Sami President will meet Māori leaders opposed to big oil


The President of the Sami Parliament of Norway arrives in the county this weekend, to engage with Māori communities opposed to exploration by Norwegian oil company Statoil.

This comes in the wake of a controversial decision by Statoil to hunt for oil in the Arctic, where international protests last year focused on Shell who subsequently quit the region.

On Friday, Statoil abandoned two permits off the Far North coast of Aotearoa, but the company is continuing a joint venture with U.S based oil corporation Chevron, exploring a vast area from the Napier coastline to Kaikoura.

“It is curious that within days of the Samediggi confirming their visit to Aotearoa, Statoil abruptly surrendered the Reinga Basin permits,” said Māori Environmental Activist Mike Smith.

President Aili Keskitalo, and the Samediggi delegation will be welcomed into the country on Monday, for their first engagement with Māori leaders from the Far North and followed by meetings in Northland, Gisborne and Waikato.

“Climate change is impacting people around the globe, notably for Sami who live near the Arctic circle.

The expansion of fossil fuel production must stop and the faster we advance alternative energy solutions, the safer everyone’s grandchildren will be,” says Mike Smith.

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