U.S. Senator calls on State Department to work on Iroquois passport issue

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is urging Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to work with American Indian governments and the Canadian and United Kingdom governments to develop acceptable travel documents for tribal citizens and to avoid a reprise of the Iroquois Nationals lacrosse team incident of last week.

Gillibrand wants internationally-recognized travel documents to be developed for the Iroquois Nation and other tribes and Indigenous nations in North America.

The issue came to a head this past week when the Iroquois Nationals lacrosse team was first denied by the U.S. government the opportunity to travel abroad with their Haudenosaunee Confederacy passports for the Lacrosse World Championships.

The U.S. eventually agreed to allow the team to travel on a special waiver, but the British would not allow the players into their country with the Haudenosaunee passports.

The lacrosse team, stuck in New York City, was forced to forfeit its first game in the championships Thursday.

The Iroquois have refused to get U.S. or Canadian passports, saying they do not want to lose their own identity.

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