Native Americans call for Redskins change

There are renewed calls from Native Americans who are demanding the NFL force the Washington Redskins to change their name.

The beleaguered National Football League (NFL) have come under renewed pressure from Native Americans to force the Washington Redskins to change its name.

In a letter to 31 owners of NFL franchises, the Change the Mascot coalition said they had the power to force Redskins boss Dan Snyder to abandon "a racial slur against Native Americans."

"Put simply, in a country and sports fan base that is becoming ever more diverse, Mr Snyder is jeopardising the welfare of the league by promoting an epitaph against people of colour," it said on Tuesday.

To drive home the point, it reminded the owners of the civic responsibilities that come with the "special tax and regulatory treatment" lavished on the NFL by the US government.

For the past year, Snyder has stubbornly defied growing pressure for a name change, arguing that the moniker of the US capital's beloved American football team actually honours Native Americans.

The letter to NFL owners follows last week's uproar over the league's handling of a domestic violence case involving Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice.

Native American leaders released the letter in Washington as part of a Capitol Hill lobbying blitz addressing key issues of concern for the nation's three million indigenous peoples.

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