Rio Tinto's subsidiary, Iron Ore Company of Canada (IOC), has been slapped with a CAD900m ($844m) lawsuit by two aboriginal communities in the Montreal's Superior Court.

The Innu communities of Uashat Mak Mani-Utenam and Matimekush-Lac John are claiming that IOC’s operations in Quebec and Labrador have disrupted their traditional lifestyle and damaged the environment.

The suit seeks a ban on the company’s operations in Quebec, Newfoundland and Labrador for failing to seek approval to operate on the native areas.

Rio Tinto spokesperson Illtud Harri refuted the claims and said that IOC had always secured all the necessary government approvals and permits.

"IOC will take all necessary measures to protect its rights and activities," added Harri.

The company has also added that the two communities involved in the suit were important partners to its operations.

Matimekush-Lac John chief Réal McKenzie told Reuters that his community is not against mining, and had signed agreements with other companies, but could not resolve differences with IOC and Rio Tinto.