WATCH: Premier Brian Pallister said his comments about “race wars” and night hunting were taken out of context.
WINNIPEG — Manitoba Premier, Brian Pallister admitted it was the wrong choice of words, but said he will not apologize for using the term “race war” when it comes to Indigenous people and night hunting.
During his first media conference since making the comment, Pallister said night hunting is a growing problem and needs to be addressed. He said he regrets the turn the debate has taken since he suggested the issue was fuelling a “race war,” but said he was trying to ease tensions at the time.
Pallister made the comment during a speech to fellow Progressive Conservatives in Virden, Man, on Jan. 16.
“It’s becoming a race war and I don’t want that. Young Indigenous people going out and shooting a bunch of moose because they can, because they say it’s their right. It does not make any sense,” Pallister said at the meeting.
On Tuesday, when he was asked about the comments, Pallister said he used the “wrong choice of words” and it was taken out of context.
“There was discussion at the meeting [in Virden] with people concerned about a video they say of young Indigenous men standing there with slaughtered moose,” Pallister said.
The comments were widely condemned by Indigenous leaders and opposition parties, who said Indigenous hunters have the right to hunt at night.