APTN National News
The new Dakota Tipi chief is calling other Dakota/Lakoa leaders together tomorrow to discuss how to support members of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in the United States who are currently in a battle with police over construction of a pipeline they say threatens their water and burial sites.
Kieth Pashe would not say what course of action would be taken, but indicated he wants to talk about blocking rail and tanker lines that transport fuel and run through Dakota territory in southern Manitoba.
Pashe was flanked by former chief Dennis Pashe and Southern Chiefs Organization Grand Chief Terry Nelson.
The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota has the support of hundreds of Native American Tribes in the United States and First Nations in Canada.
The fight is over a section of the 1,886 kilometre Dakota Access pipeline. If completed, it will carry up to 500,000 barrels of oil from the Bakken oil fields of northwestern North Dakota to Illinois for processing.
At issue is a section that will travel underneath Lake Oahe, a reservoir on the Missouri river and source of drinking water for the tribe.
Hundreds of people have been arrested during violent clashes with local and state police and National Guard forces who have used tasers, pepper spray, bean bag guns, rubber bullets, water and sound cannons to beat back mainly unarmed anti-pipeline supporters who call themselves water protectors. Along with those arrested, hundreds have been injured in these clashes and one woman is at risk of having her arm amputated after witnesses said she was hit by a police concussion grenade.
On Sunday, thousands are expected at a march in Washington, D.C. in support of the Tribe. At the moment, construction has stopped on the edge of Lake Oahe after the United States Army Corps of Engineers put a hold on the project until it consulted with the Tribe.