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Leonard Peltier nominated for Nobel Peace Prize

Published Apr 19, 2007 10:40 PM

Leonard Peltier

Indigenous political prisoner Leonard Peltier has been nominated for the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize, according to the Leonard Peltier Defense Committee.

Official confirmation on this nomination was received April 3 by the LPDC. In their announcement to supporters, they state, “We want to thank the people who nominated Leonard for this prestigious award. We ask that supporters NOT send letters of support or recommendation to the Nobel Peace Prize Committee as only selected individuals can nominate for the Nobel Peace Prize.”

Peltier, a Lakota/Anishinabe veteran of the American Indian Movement, is recognized around the world as a political prisoner. He has been in prison for 32 years, since 1976, for a crime he did not commit. In violation of its own statutes, the U.S. government has repeatedly refused him parole.

The U.S. suppressed hundreds of thousands of pages of documents, including ballistics evidence, which would indicate Peltier’s innocence in a 1975 shootout at Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. Two FBI agents opened fire on the Jumping Bull compound there while children, elders and adults slept. In the resulting firefight, a Native man and the two agents died.

U.S. prosecutors have publicly admitted that they do not know who actually fired the shots that killed the agents.

This year 181 official candidates for the annual Nobel Peace Prize have been registered. The name of the Prize recipient for 2007 will be announced in mid-October.