Outrage In Canada After Militarized RCMP Arrest 14 Wet’Suwet’en Land Defenders on Sovereign Indigenous Land | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


Outrage In Canada After Militarized RCMP Arrest 14 Wet’Suwet’en Land Defenders on Sovereign Indigenous Land

As The Real News reported last month, the Wet’suwet’en Indigenous people of Northern British Columbia and Canada have established checkpoints on their land to prevent pipeline company TransCanada from building a gas pipeline across their territory. The Wet’suwet’en people have never signed treaties with Canada or otherwise ceded their lands, a fact confirmed by Canada’s own Supreme Court in 1997 in a landmark decision known as Delgamuukw. Several days ago, members of the Aboriginal police liaison of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police met with the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs and indicated the specially trained tactical forces would be deployed to forcibly remove Wet’suwet’en people from sovereign Wet’suwet’en territory.

On Monday, January 7, indeed, armed police, some dressed in camouflage fatigues, broke down homemade barriers at a checkpoint on unceded Wet’suwet’en territory and arrested 14 land defenders. Following the arrests, and as reported by APTN News, hereditary Wet’suwet’en leaders pledged to keep fighting. Chief Madeek, Hereditary Leader of the Gitdumden Clan, declared that “We may have lost this battle, but not the war.” Upon learning of the arrests, civil society organizations from across Canada called for a series of cross-country series of protests in solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en people, and for the purpose of denouncing the Trudeau government’s heavy-handed tactics on the sovereign land of the Wet’suwet’en. Over 50 such protests took place across Canada on January 8.

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