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UN official: Consider Cherokee girl's rights - abc27 WHTM

UN official: Consider Cherokee girl's rights

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OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A United Nations official focusing on the rights of indigenous people is calling on state, federal and tribal authorities to ensure that the rights of a nearly 4-year-old girl in the middle of a custody dispute are considered.

James Anaya is the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples. He says in a statement released Tuesday that authorities should consider Veronica's rights to maintain her "cultural identity" as a member of the Cherokee Nation.

Veronica's father, Dusten Brown, has been fighting for custody of the girl with a South Carolina couple who adopted her.

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled than Brown, a member of the Cherokee Nation, can't use a federal law meant to keep Native American tribes together to press his case.

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