Tåssåsen Sami community which lost their native landrights for wintergrazing within the district of Härjedalen trough the verdict in 1996 seems to become eradicated. The community which spans over two rural districts had access to a small piece of land in another administrative region (Jämtland) which enabled the main enterprise -reindeerhusbadry- to survive, for two more years.
But now in 1998 they are faced with yet another one trial which challenge what little native landrights that remains!
The economical resources of the community is completely depleted by the last trial, a fact which is wellknown -also for their adversarys.
Threats to give up native landrights
So the landowners of the remaining area wrote a letter in the spring of 1998 where they demanded that the native community simply should renounce the native landrights that remains, or face a trial over the native landrights in this small county called Berg. Something that of cource was unacceptable for the native community -since they would simply not be able to survive without access to any winterland for their reindeers.
The Sami community called to a meeting with the landowners where the chairman Olof Johansson stated "If there's a new trial we won't be able to defend ourselves. We cannot afford it! The last trial have depleted all our resources."
The Sami's begged and asked for compassion, that the landowners would refrain from their plans for a trial over these landrights -in vain.
Spurred by the victory of the landtrial in 1996, the landowners filed their summons against the native community this summer, and now we have a situation where the native community is unable to even defend itself. No help is expected or forthcoming from the neighbouring native communitys either, their economy dangerously close to backruptcy after the last trial, one of them have recently lost an important part of the springpasture due to exploitations by a miningcompany as well.
And they all face similar trials over native landrights, also communitys far to the north -such as in Swedens Lapland.
We thank you for your interest in this matter as well as the letters of support we have got -but as of now we can only ask one question:
Will this be the only kind of reindeer
you will be able to see in the future?
Thanks again and goodbye! From the webmaster.
Some links which described our struggle: