Several tribal leaders claimed that 40 water protectors were injured by rubber bullets and some of the 141 arrested on Thursday were kept on dog kennels and marked in their arms like holocaust prisoners.
By H. Nelson Goodson
Hispanic News Network U.S.A.
October 29, 2016
Mandan, N. Dakota – On Saturday, both Archambault II, Chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and Harold Frazier, Chairman of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe held a press conference to denounced the untrue allegations made by both Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier and N. Dakota State Patrol Bryan Niewind who reported that water protectors were in private property and that a woman was arrested who had a handgun and fired three shots. Archambault said, the disputed land was stolen and sold illegally by the Army Corps of Engineers to the Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), which is affiliated with the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). The land where the DAPL pipeline construction continues to be built and bought by ETP is in question and the oil company is being investigated by the N. Dakota State Attorney General Office, which cited under the N. Dakota’s Corporate Farming Law that it can not buy, lease or own property, if it is not “use for business purposes, registered family farms, ect.” So far, the ETP had until October 27 to file a notice of intent with the state, but it has not explained their intent to use the land other than installing a pipeline that will allow about 500,000 gallons of oil to flow through the land and under the Missouri River.
Archambault alleged that EPT is a bad company and currently is being sued in four different legal lawsuits for contaminating the environment. He also alleged that Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier is lying (speaks with a forked tongue) when he sent out information to the media that a woman was arrested after she pulled a gun and fired three shots on Thursday at the N. Dakota Highway 1806 during the police assault to evict water protectors from Native American land under the 1851 Treaty of Fort Laramie. Archambault says, EPT hasn’t provided proof that they purchased the disputed land legally. He accused Kirchmeier, multiple state and federal legislators of favoring DAPL oil interests and taking contributions by the oil company.
Archambault says, that the pipeline should be moved away from sacred sites that are been threaten or have been destroyed and not allowed to cross the the Missouri River. He suggested that energy pipelines currently crossing the Missouri River should be inspected and kept up to avoid any river contamination. The DAPL pipeline could be rerouted, so it does not cross the river and still allow for DAPL to operate its oil flow through the state, according to Archambault.
Frazier confirmed that Kyle Thompson, a DAPL security guard who was armed with an assault rifle had been taken into custody by the Bureau of Indian Affairs officers on Thursday. Archambault alleged that Thompson had infiltrated one of the multiple water protectors camp to spy for DAPL and ETP.
Frazier says, an attorney for the tribe will file a public information request to seek more information about Thompson’s arrest near the Oceti Sakowin Camp. Thompson had an AR-15 with 30 live rounds. According to a Facebook video that went viral, Thompson was seen pointing his weapon and firing his weapon at a woman as other water protectors surrounded him after he was chasing a Native American journalist and was discovered to have a loaded weapon. Thompson was headed to the camp.
Frazier criticized MCSO deputies for forcing a water protector from a sweat teepee who was praying and arresting him. He explained, it’s like dragging and taking out someone who is praying from a church and arresting him.
Sheriff Kirchmeier on Friday confirmed that some of those arrested were marked with numbers on their arms for property identification purposes. Property seized was numbered as the individual arrested, so it could be reclaimed later by the person. Some of the 141 water protectors (protesters) were booked and processed at the Morton County jail, some of those arrested were transferred to four different county jails, at McLean, Cass, Ramsey and Burleigh.
Sheriff Kirchmeier said that the Native Americans who block part of Highway 1806 and setup a camp to block DAPL construction were in private property own by EPT, but Archambault disputed that and says the water protectors were in tribal land.
Frazier confirmed that he has requested for the U.N. to send troops to the area and monitor the tense situation between water protectors, police and DAPL. Amnesty International is sending observers as well. Law enforcement has block entrance to the disputed land where DAPL continues to construct the pipeline even when an easement permit has been denied until the Corps of Engineers evaluates the environmental impact in the area.
U.S. Senator from Vermont, Bernie Sanders has requested for Obama to suspend all DAPL easement permits until an environmental impact evaluation is made along the four state pipeline construction area. President Barack H. Obama has not acted on Sanders request nor Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton (D) has taken a stand on DAPL. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has invested interests with DAPL, according to Archambault.
Law enforcement officers from Wisconsin, Indiana, Minnesota, Wyoming and South Dakota including the National Guard assisted the Morton County Sheriff’s Office assault on Thursday, which concussion grenades, mace, tasers, rubber bullets, a LRAD Sound Cannon and a Active Denied System (heat skin irritant) were used to induce pain on water protectors.
In other news, the Kahanawake community in Montreal, Canada set up a road blockade on Highway 132 at the Mercier Bridge on Friday for several hours and today in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.
In N. Dakota, Myron Dewey reported Saturday that a 20 vehicle caravan went to collect some teepees and sacred items from the Hwy 1806 camp where 141 water protectors were arrested for trespassing and was not allowed by a MCSO deputy to video record inside the area for Digital Smoke Signals media. Nine people were allowed into the area, according Dewey.
Press conference: Cheyenne River Tribal Chairman Harold Frazier and Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II are addressing police tactics at the Morton County Sheriff’s Office. KFYR-TV News video: http://goo.gl/wacJP0