#Regram #RG @nytimes:
On one side of a barricade in remote British Columbia, the Wet’suwet’en people hoped to stop a pipeline that would cross their traditional land. On the other side were heavily armed police looking to enforce its pre-construction. The 416-mile pipeline would carry gas extracted from the Dawson Creek area of the province to the liquefied natural gas export terminal in Kitimat, British Columbia. The company behind the pipeline, Coastal GasLink, has signed agreements with all 20 of the elected councils representing First Nations people along the route. It also awarded 620 million in Canadian dollars in contract work to Indigenous businesses as part of the pipeline project.
But the protests highlight a dual leadership structure among the Wet’suwet’en people. Most of the hereditary chiefs — who collectively claim title to a New Jersey-sized section of British Columbia and represent the traditional governance of the Wet’suwet’en — were opposed. “Money means nothing to us,” said Chief Madeek, one of the hereditary leaders, who also goes by Jeff Brown. By asserting their sovereignty over the land, Indigenous groups have tried to stall, with varying degrees of success, oil and gas projects across the country. The Unist’ot’en camp of the Wet’suwet’en people has become an important part of a broader movement of Indigenous resistance to Canada’s fossil fuel ambitions. Visit the link in our profile to read more.
@photobracken shot these photos of protestors; the Unist’ot’en camp; the Unist’ot’en camp spokeswoman Freda Huson speaking with police; and camp supporters standing behind a fire, set to cover a retreat from police.