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Skidegate woman drives 2,800km to support U.S. pipeline protest

Erica Ryan-Gagne and her companions at Standing Rock, North Dakota. (Credit: Erica Ryan-Gagne)

Erica Ryan-Gagne and her companions at Standing Rock, North Dakota. (Credit: Erica Ryan-Gagne)

A Haida Gwaii woman arrived yesterday in North Dakota to take part in the massive protests at Standing Rock.

Skidegate’s Erica Ryan-Gagne made the 2,800km drive with several other adults and a number of children to join the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe who are protesting the Dakota Access pipeline.

The protests have attracted thousands of supporters to the area, and Ryan-Gagne says the reception has been great.

She describes the atmosphere as serious, but festive.

Ryan-Gagne says they also donated a number of supplies as well as cash donations.

Their trip has also gained the attention of the Council of Haida Nation, which released a letter in support of Ryan-Gagne’s trip.

Late this afternoon, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe released a statement saying the federal court has ruled against their challenge of the pipeline’s permits.

But in a surprise move, three U.S. federal agencies have temporarily blocked construction of the pipeline on land bordering and under Lake Oahe.

A joint statement from the Department of Justice, the Department of the Army and the Department of the Interior says they’ll be reviewing the permits issued to the pipeline.

Furthermore, the statement says there will be government to government talks with Native American tribes on how the consultation process works or doesn’t work.

This could lead to changes in how the U.S. consults with Native American tribes or new laws governing the process.

About Gene Law

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