“RCMP raid is on the horizon.” Gidimt’en Checkpoint.
11/17/2021 URGENT UPDATE – Dozens of RCMP have deployed onto Wet’suwet’en territory.
A charter plane full of RCMP have landed at the Smithers airport, with between 30 and 50 officers equipped with camo duffel bags. Police loaded onto two buses and unmarked, rental pick-up trucks and headed out towards the yintah. An RCMP helicopter is reported to be heading to the area.
Throughout today, helicopters have circled over our camps, conducting low, deliberate flights for surveillance.
The road into our yintah remains blocked by RCMP at 28km, with hereditary chiefs, food, and medical supplies being turned away.
In the middle of a climate emergency, as highways and roads are being washed away and entire communities are being flooded and evacuated, the Province has chosen to send busloads of police to criminalize Wet’suwet’en water protectors and to work as a mercenary force for oil and gas.
We will not back down.
We need all eyes on Wet’suwet’en Yintah.
We need boots on the ground.
We need solidarity actions throughout Canada.
Wet’suwet’en land defenders and supporters say inaction from B.C. and Canada left them no choice but to enforce an eviction order against Coastal GasLink workers and deactivate road access to the project, a pair of measures that have prompted the provincial and federal governments to call for a peaceful resolution to the blockades.
“We were sending a clear message to the province, to Canada, and they weren’t acting on it — they weren’t hearing what we were saying — so we had to get a little bit louder,” Gidimt’en camp spokesperson Sleydo’ Molly Wickham told The Narwhal in an interview. “They’re destroying absolutely everything that is important to us in our territory. And they have been continuing to do work, despite the eviction order last year.”
The sole access route to Coastal GasLink project sites and work camps housing some 500 people was cut off after the company failed to act on an eviction order issued on Sunday. Tensions have been steadily escalating in Gidimt’en clan territory south of Houston, B.C., since September as the pipeline company began preparing to drill under the Wedzin Kwa (Morice) River.
The Wet’suwet’en eviction order isn’t new. It was first issued on Jan. 4, 2020, by the hereditary chiefs.
“Anuc ‘nu’at’en (Wet’suwet’en law) is not a ‘belief’ or a ‘point of view,’ ” the chiefs wrote at the time. “It is a way of sustainably managing our territories and relations with one another and the world around us, and it has worked for millennia to keep our territories intact. Our law is central to our identity. The ongoing criminalization of our laws by Canada’s courts and industrial police is an attempt at genocide, an attempt to extinguish Wet’suwet’en identity itself.”
UPDATED: Wet’suwet’en land defenders say B.C., federal inaction prompted enforcement of Coastal GasLink eviction By Matt Simmons, Energetic City, Nov 16, 2021
When Chief Dsta’hyl arrived on a Saturday morning in October, the big construction vehicles rumbled back and forth over the cold mud. He watched an excavator dig into the soil, its yellow, hydraulic arm moving against the green backdrop of forests that he has called home all his life.
The area that was being prepared for construction lies within the territory of the Wet’suwet’en, a First Nation in what is currently called British Columbia, Canada. As a supporting chief from the Likhts’amisyu clan, Dsta’hyl had been tasked with enforcing Wet’suwet’en law in the area.
The scene he was witnessing — construction crews preparing to build a pipeline through Wet’suwet’en territory, without their consent — represented a blatant violation of those laws. And Dsta’hyl had seen enough. After warning the on-site construction managers that they were trespassing, he arrived the next day and approached a pair of orange-vested security subcontractors employed by TC Energy, the company building the fracked gas pipeline known as Coastal GasLink, or CGL. He notified them that he would be seizing one of their excavators and then stepped onto the hulking vehicle and disabled it by disconnecting its battery and other components. Though he planned to leave the vehicle in place, Dsta’hyl said he wanted to make a statement to the company, which the traditional leaders decided to evict from their territory last year.
Canada sides with a pipeline, violating Wet’suwet’en laws — and its own. Despite a Supreme Court ruling, Coastal GasLink is on track to be built through unceded land by Mark Armao, Grist, Nov 18, 2021
Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General, has released the following statement in relation to current events around the Coastal GasLink project:
“Yesterday’s blockades of the Morice River Forest Service Road have put at risk emergency access and the delivery of critical services to more than 500 Coastal GasLink workers, and the good faith commitments made between the Office of the Wet’suwet’en and the Province of B.C. to develop a new relationship based on respect.
“The B.C. government is calling on all those involved to de-escalate the current confrontation and move quickly to eliminate the blockades through peaceful means.