News In Brief

Quebec Inuit upset over plan for probe of caribou deaths

Inuit residents of northern Quebec are upset by Premier Rene Levesque's refusal to hold an independent public inquiry into the drowning of 9,600 caribou during the annual migration earlier this month.

The provincial Environment Department's plan to hold an internal investigation denies the Inuit the chance to question the government's environmental and social standards, said Mary Simon, spokesman for Makivik Corporation, which represents the interests of the native Inuit.

Hydro-Quebec, the provincial power utility, said the caribou drowned because heavy rains had raised the river's water level. The Inuit have said the power company released too much water from its dams June through September.

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