182 indigenous children's remains dug up at third school, Internet calls it 'racial cleansing'

A Twitter user said, 'What kind of monsters would do this to children? Canada has some explaining to do'


                            182 indigenous children's remains dug up at third school, Internet calls it 'racial cleansing'
Representational image (Photo by Graeme Robertson/Getty Images)

On Wednesday, June 30, a Canadian Indigenous community stated that a search using ground-penetrating radar has discovered 182 human remains in unmarked graves in British Columbia. The news comes a few months after 215 human remains of children were found at the Kamloops Indian Residential School building in May 2021.

According to a report, the Lower Kootenay Band, a member band of the Ktunaxa Nation, released a statement on Wednesday, June 30, stating that 182 remains were found at an unmarked grave where St Eugene's Mission School was formerly located. "It is believed that the remains of these 182 souls are from the member Bands of the Ktunaxa nation, neighboring First Nations communities, & the community of aqam," the statement said.

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A member community of the Ktunaxa Nation, the Aqam, conducted the hunt for the remains using radar, which revealed that the graves of the dead were shallow and only 3 to 4 feet deep. From 1912 until the early 1970s the school was operated by the Roman Catholic church. Nearly 100 Lower Kootenay Band members ages 7 to 15 were required by the Canadian government to attend. "The Lower Kootenay Band is still in the very early stages of receiving information from the reports of the findings but will provide updates as time progresses," the statement said. "The Lower Kootenay Band has living survivors of the St Eugene's Mission School & requests that the general public respect our privacy at this time."

Chief Jason Louie of the Lower Kootenay Band called the discovery "deeply personal" since he had relatives attend the school. "The Nazis were held accountable for their war crimes. I see no difference in locating the priests and nuns and the brothers who are responsible for this mass murder to be held accountable for their part in this attempt of genocide of an Indigenous people," he said.

From the 19th century until the 1970s, more than 150,000 Indigenous children were forced to attend state-funded Christian boarding schools to assimilate them into Canadian society. Thousands of children died there of disease and other causes, with many never returned to their families. Nearly three-quarters of the 130 residential schools were administered by Roman Catholic missionary congregations, with others run by the Presbyterian, Anglican and the United Church of Canada, which today is the largest Protestant denomination in the country. The Canadian government has acknowledged that physical and sexual abuse was rampant in the schools, with students beaten for speaking their native languages.

As soon as the latest news made its way to social media, people started reacting to it. One person said, "What kind of monsters would do this to children? Canada has some explaining to do." While another one claimed, "I think we can be 100% sure that this absolutely did also happen in the US. We had our own residential schools."



 



 

 

Revealing a series of facts, one person tweeted, "What I don't understand in so many of the replies to these revelations is the shock. The UN said in 2019 that Canada was guilty of genocide - why so little outrage then? Because it was all still 'rumour' and hidden? This IS our history and present. We need to be honest." He further said, "The Truth and Reconciliation Commission report in 2015 revealed the genocide for what it was and demanded that the children be found. We ALL knew these revelations were coming. Pressure the government now to stop fighting the Indigenous Peoples and act honourably."



 



 

 

One person tweeted, "This was really a racial cleansing." Calling it "heartbreaking" another one said, "This is heartbreaking. The sad truth is there’s likely to be many more. We need there to be a full investigation into this horrific nightmare! This is genocide and indigenous people deserve justice!"