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Local activists to protest attack on Unist’ot’en Blockade

Activists believe province must reverse its decision to support massive pipeline exports of Liquid Natural Gas.

Wednesday, January 9th, in front of the Nelson Constituency office of Michelle Mungall, MLA and Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources 433 Josephine Street in Nelson, activists will be protesting against what they deem as the illegal RCMP attack on the sovereignty of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation and the 8-year old Unist’ot’en blockade of the Coastal GasLink Pipeline route.

“Wholesale arrests and overrunning of a peaceful blockade designed to defend the right of self-determination and sovereignty of a the Wet’suwe’ten Nation is blatantly against reconciliation of any kind,” said Keith Wiley of the Nelson Chapter of Council of Canadians in a media release. "Far from moving to a new nation to nation relationship, the actions by police against the Wet’suwe’ten are just more colonizing business-as-usual."

In a separate media release, RCMP report Monday officers attended the Morice River Bridge in Houston, BC to enforce the interim injunction order granted by the Supreme Court of British Columbia.

RCMP said Just prior to 11 a.m., police officers from the Division Liaison Team spoke with representatives of the Gitdumt’en camp about the removal of a road block that they have set up along the Morice West Forest Service Road, several kilometres away from the Morice River Bridge but within the court ordered injunction.

The RCMP also facilitated a meetingbetween Hereditary Chiefs and CGL in the hopes that this could be resolved without police involvement. When it was determined that the matter could not be resolved, at 3 pm the RCMP proceeded to enter the blockade in order to facilitate open access to the service road.

“As of 6:45 p.m. there were 14 persons arrested from the blockade set up by Gitdumt’en on Morice West Forest Service Road for various offences including alleged violations of the injunction order,” RCMP said. All those arrested continue to be processed at this time. During the arrests, the RCMP observed a number of fires being lit along the roadway by unknown persons, and large trees felled across the roadway.”

Wiley said the protestors are also supporting the global Extinction Rebellion movement which is mobilizing for a real climate plan and definitive actions to reduce carbon dioxide and fossil fuel use.

“The province must reverse its decision to support massive pipeline exports of Liquid Natural Gas,” says Wiley.  “Expansion of fracked gas and LNG is a climate crime which will not make this a Clean BC province but a fossil fuel dinosaur, with heavy subsidies to expanding fossil fuel production.”

RCMP said there are also erroneous reports that the RCMP jammed communications in
the area, preventing the media and public from providing information about the unfolding situation, and that the Canadian Military were present during the police enforcement operation.

“We would like toclarify that both of these allegations are incorrect,” RCMP said. “The area is extremely remote and even police had limited access to communication.

“Police officers, including members of Tactical and Emergency ResponseTeams, have been deployed as part of our measured and scalable approach to enforcing the court ordered injunction.”