President Obama, and First Lady Michelle Obama are scheduled to visit the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota June 13, marking the first visit by a sitting president to Indian country since President Clinton visited the Pine Ridge Reservation in 1999.
The event is particularly historic in that the visit marks the first time in U.S. history that a First Lady has accompanied the president to a Native community and celebration, Indian Country Today Media Network said.
In an op-ed published by ICTMN last week, Obama announced his plans to visit Cannon Ball, which was the home of Sitting Bull, to participate in the tribes annual Flag Day Celebration Wacipi honoring Native American Veterans. Obama also announced the next steps that his administration will take to support job creation, education, and self-determination in Indian country.
In an exclusive interview with ICTMN, Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Chairman Dave Archambault II discussed the importance of the president’s visit and its significance to native communities across the nation.
“President Obama has been a great friend and supporter of Indian country,” Archambault, who will give remarks and present Obama and the First Lady with gifts from his tribe, said. “No other president has ever done as much as he has done for Indian people.”
The Obamas are due to arrive on the reservation at around 2:40 p.m. Central Time, according to indianz.com. They will meet with Native youth for a roundtable discussion that is closed to the public and press.
Obama will then deliver remarks at the tribe’s celebration, which will be webcast live at approximately 3:45 p.m. Central Time at www.whitehouse.gov/live.
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