WASHINGTON, D.C. (Press Shia) – An American activist and founder of a peaceful campaign against the Dakota Access oil pipeline expressed deep concern about the brutal tactics the US police use for crackdown against Native American water protectors in Standing Rock, North Dakota.
In a meeting held at the George Washington University in Washington, D.C., on Thursday night, a number of organizers of peaceful protests against the Dakota Access oil pipeline briefed students on the latest activities to prevent the construction of the oil pipeline near the Standing Rock Indian Reservation in North Dakota.
The meeting was attended by more than 300 students and ordinary people.
Highlighting the efforts that Native American people have made to dissuade the US officials from pressing ahead with the controversial pipeline project, LaDonna Brave Bull Allard, a campaign leader, said North Dakota police force have resorted to violence, fired tear gas canisters at women and children, and used dogs to disperse the protesters.
Ms. Brave is the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s Section 106 Historic Preservation Officer. She is also the founder and director of the Sacred Stone Camp, a spirit camp established in April 2016 on her family’s land on the Standing Rock Reservation, as a center of cultural preservation and spiritual resistance to the Dakota Access Pipeline.
In an interview with Yes! Magazine in September, Brave said, “Where the Cannonball River joins the Missouri River, at the site of our camp today to stop the Dakota Access pipeline, there used to be a whirlpool that created large, spherical sandstone formations. The river’s true name is Inyan Wakangapi Wakpa, River that Makes the Sacred Stones, and we have named the site of our resistance on my family’s land the Sacred Stone Camp. The stones are not created anymore, ever since the US Army Corps of Engineers dredged the mouth of the Cannonball River and flooded the area in the late 1950s as they finished the Oahe dam. They killed a portion of our sacred river.”
Completion of the $3.7 billion Dakota Access Pipeline, set to run 1,172 miles (1,885 km) from North Dakota to Illinois, was delayed in September so federal authorities could re-examine permits required by the Army Corps of Engineers.
The Standing Rock tribe and environmental activists say the project would threaten water supplies and sacred Native American sites and ultimately contribute to climate change. Protests have at times turned violent, as security dogs attacked activists during the rallies.