A group of people stood outside the Prince Rupert RCMP detachment protesting the police blockade at the Unist’ot’en camp, where Indigenous people and supporters are trying to stop the Coastal GasLink pipeline from going through their land. (Matthew Allen / The Northern View)

Anti-LNG pipeline in Prince Rupert shows support for Wet’suwet’en

Nearly a dozen Indigenous people gathered outside the RCMP station to protest Coastal GasLink

Indigenous people from Prince Rupert are joining protests across the country in response to arrests made in Wet’suwet’en traditional lands southwest of Smithers.

At 10 a.m. on Jan. 8, a group of approximately eleven people met outside the Prince Rupert RCMP station on Sixth Avenue West. They are members of Hartley Bay, Lax Kw’alaams, Metlakatla, Kitkatla, Tahltan, Haida, Gitxsan and Cherokee First Nations.

“What is happening to them is outrageous,” said Lara Peterson, a Metlakatla member and one of the organizers of the protest. “They’re arresting elderly women and other women for standing their ground and saying they want clean water.

“…In order for everybody to know and to be heard, this is what we have to do and we’re not going to back down and we’re not going away.”

After gathering outside the entrance of RCMP station on Sixth Avenue, the group moved to McBride Street where they held signs and chanted slogans. Cars drove by and honked their support.

On Jan. 7, RCMP officers arrested 14 people who are part of an effort to block the Coastal GasLink pipeline from being built on their lands.

The Unist’ot’en camp, Gitdumden checkpoint blocked a forest service road needed by Coastal GasLink workers to do pre-construction in the area for the pipeline. The RCMP were enforcing a court injunction against the protesters and the checkpoint impeding the progress of the workers.

“The primary concerns of the police are public safety, police officer safety, and preservation of the right to peaceful, lawful and safe protest, within the terms set by the Supreme Court in the injunction,” a Jan. 6 RCMP press release said.

A post on the Unist’ot’en Facebook page said the RCMP enforcement was an “act of war,” and called for international help with donations or “physical support.”

The Gitxsan Hereditary Chiefs threw their support behind the Wet’suwet’en chiefs in a press release on Jan. 8.

“We consider all persons to be trespassers that attempt to use a permit issued and sold by the Province of BC in these circumstance,” said Simogyet Twem Neak, Brenton Williams, chair person of Gitxsan Treaty Society. “Our hereditary chiefs are obligated to step in to protect our jursidiction and at the same time we are prepared to engage in a collaborative process and dialogue with a progressive MLA like Minister Doug Donaldson.”

Fifty-five rallies have since taken place in communities both across the country and internationally in response to the arrests.

On Jan. 7, Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen released a statement asking the federal government to engage with Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs to find a resolution to the issue.

“I am calling on the federal government to engage with the Wet’suwet’en and demonstrate Prince Minister Trudeau’s commitment to real and meaningful reconciliation,” Cullen said.

The 670-kilometre Coastal GasLink pipeline project would move natural gas from Dawson Creek to the LNG Canada facility on the coast of Kitimat.

With files from Chris Gareau

FOR MORE: MP visits Wet’suwet’en blockade to support peaceful resolution

To report a typo, email: editor@thenorthernview.com.



Send Newsroom email.
Like the The Northern View on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

A group of people stood outside the Prince Rupert RCMP detachment protesting the police blockade at the Unist’ot’en camp, where Indigenous people and supporters are trying to stop the Coastal GasLink pipeline from going through their land. (Matthew Allen / The Northern View)

Johan Dejong holds an LNG protest sign during a rally against the Coastal GasLink pipeline on Jan. 8 on McBride Street. (Matthew Allen / The Northern View)

Just Posted

Mclean’s Shipyard sells

New adventures for owners of Adventure Tours & Westcoast Launch

Severe wind warning for Haida Gwaii and the North Coast

Winds of more than 100 km/h are predicted for Wednesday afternoon

SD52 schools using bottled water, waiting on results from copper levels in drinking water

New guidelines cut down the allowable limit for lead and copper in drinking water

B.C. premier talks forestry, service needs with handful of northern mayors in Prince George

Prince George meeting completes premier’s tour of Kitimat, Terrace, Fort St. James and Quesnel

Indigenous LNG supporters chide human rights advocates over pipeline comments

Coastal GasLink has signed agreements with 20 elected First Nation councils along the pipeline’s 670-kilometre path

Four things ‘not’ to do if you run into Prince Harry and Meghan in B.C.

Here is a list of some things you definitely should NOT do, according to the BBC

WEB POLL: Are you in favour of LNG exports from the North Coast?

AlaskCAN LNG recently announced their goal of building a $12 billion LNG… Continue reading

B.C.-based Coulson Aviation C-130 crashes in Australia

Three people are confirmed dead in the crash in New South Wales

New nasal spray launched in Canada to combat hypoglycemic shock in diabetics

Baqsimi is a nasal spray contains three milligrams of glucagon

B.C. RCMP spent roughly $750K on massive manhunt for Port Alberni men

Manitoba RCMP helped with 17-day search through the province’s northern terrain

Future space homes could be made of mushrooms

NASA explores use of fungi to build structures in space

Man killed by police in Lytton called 911, asking to be shot: RCMP

Howard Schantz, also known as Barry Schantz was killed following a standoff at his Lytton home

Canadian public health agencies ramping up preparations in response to new virus

Health officials have said there are no confirmed cases of the emerging coronavirus in Canada

Most Read