The United Nations human rights council will hold an emergency meeting on Monday to consider whether Canada has the right to hold an international conference on the rights of indigenous peoples, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal has announced.
The council will meet to consider the implications of the decision of a federal court to halt an Indigenous peoples conference in Ottawa and other Canadian cities on June 27.
The tribunal says the United Nations Conference on Indigenous Peoples is an unauthorised assembly and is therefore not a proper forum for Canada to hold the meeting.
The tribunal says it is now seeking the Canadian government’s help in organising the conference.
The UN Human Rights Council meets every four years.
The council last held a session on March 25-26, and the meeting is expected to last until the end of July.
The meeting is scheduled to include an opportunity for Indigenous peoples to present their cases for the first time, but the tribunal says a decision on the case should be made at the end.
The Canadian government has not yet responded to a request for comment.
A spokesperson for the federal government told The Globe and Mail that the government is reviewing the decision.
“The government of Canada has a commitment to respect the sovereignty of the Canadian people and will take appropriate actions as needed,” the spokesperson said in an email.
“We will be providing an update on the situation when the council reconvenes on Monday.”