August 12, 2013
TAHLEQUAH, Okla.— Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker issued the following statement Monday after a Tulsa judge ruled in favor of the Cherokee Nation, issuing an injunction to halt land into trust for the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians.
“Today’s judgment is a reinforcement of the Cherokee Nation’s inherent tribal sovereignty within our jurisdictional boundaries. As a government that provides critical services to Cherokee citizens, we must defend that historical sovereignty and our economic development at all costs. The court’s decision is fair and just and helps resolve a complicated struggle that has been ongoing for more than 20 years. It is our hope that we can continue our work in building a stronger Cherokee government for our people, as well as strengthening the bonds with our United Keetoowah Band brothers and sisters. We hope a solution that keeps Keetoowah citizens working can be achieved. As the elected leader of the Cherokee people, I strive to preserve jobs and create career opportunities for extended Cherokee families. ”