Native Sun News Today: #NoDAPL movement forges ahead to win

Camp members insist that they are not protestors, rather “protectors” or “defenders” of water and life. Photo courtesy Red Warrior Camp

Courageous stand by tribes, allies commended
Oyate regroup after feds stall Dakota Access Pipeline at Missouri River crossing
By Talli Nauman
Native Sun News Today
Health & Environment Editor

CANNON BALL, N.D. –– Tribal government, grassroots activists and their allies in the struggle to prevent completion of the privately-owned Dakota Access Pipeline, or DAPL, are forging ahead with strategies to win after a federal judge on Sept. 9 denied the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s request for a preliminary injunction to halt construction.

The U.S. departments of Justice, Army and Interior issued a joint statement immediately after the ruling, softening it by temporarily stalling work on the route where it would cross the Oahe Reservoir on the Missouri River and adjacent 1851 Ft. Laramie Treaty territory near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation.

“This federal statement is a game changer for the tribe and we are acting immediately on our legal options, including filing an appeal and a temporary injunction to force DAPL to stop construction,” the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe responded in a written release.

The release noted that despite the negative court ruling, the ensuing administrative action creates opportunities for ongoing conflict resolution. The federal statement “set the stage for a nationwide reform, establishing consultation with tribes regarding the need for meaningful tribal input for all pipeline projects in the future,” the tribe pronounced.

The Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, which intervened in the Standing Rock suit with claims based on treaty rights and water protection, responded in kind. “Throughout this process we have demanded that the federal government uphold its trust responsibilities to the Great Sioux Nation,” said tribal Chairman Harold Frazier.

“Today’s actions by the Department of Justice give me great hope that we can finally begin a dialogue so that the views and culture of tribal peoples will be heard.”

The Sacred Stone Camp, established at Cannon Ball in Morton County in April to host frontline resisters of the oil pipeline project, responded: “With this news, we celebrate, yet remain vigilant and prepared to continue to put our bodies on the line to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline from desecrating the sacred.”

Frazier thanked campers at Sacred Stone and Red Warrior Camp for “their commitment to protecting our sacred land and valuable resources.

"Even as our site protectors were indiscriminately pepper-sprayed and bitten while non-violently protesting the irrevocable destruction of our burial grounds and sacred sites, they never gave up or lost hope,” he said in reference to DAPL’s private security guard action on Sept. 3.

The camps, backed in its position by dozens of other tribal governments, by the chair and members of the U.N. Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues and by the American Civil Liberties Union, have attracted thousands of followers from 120 Native Nations and have received solidarity from hundreds of organizations worldwide.

One of them, the 185,000-member National Nurses United, welcomed the Administration’s offer of reconsideration on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers directive to permit the Missouri River crossing and 200 other crossings in the same watershed without an Environmental Impact Statement, as advised by the EPA.

Read the rest of the story on the Native Sun News Today website: Courageous stand by tribes, allies commended

(Contact Talli Nauman at

Copyright permission Native Sun News

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