Wet’suwet’en Land Defenders Legal Fund
– www.yintahaccess.com –
Following the brutal and militarized raids on Gidimt’en Territory on November 18th and 19th, 2021, legal defense funds are once again needed to support Land Defenders and supporters facing charges.
Sleydo’ Molly Wickham, Chief Woos’ daughter Jocey, two members of the media, and other Indigenous land defenders were among the 32 people arrested at Coyote Camp and 44km during the two day siege. A convoy of dozens of RCMP officers escorting Coastal GasLink workers and heavy equipment, raided Coyote Camp, violently removing Wet’suwet’en people from their own lands. Those people need support now.
So far, all charges have been civil breach of the injunction. However, many people including Sleydo’ are being held until a bail hearing on Monday, when details about the charges being faced will be announced.
Prior to her arrest, Sleydo’ stated:
“The Wet’suwet’en people, under the governance of their Hereditary Chiefs, are standing in the way of the largest fracking project in Canadian history. Our medicines, our berries, our food, the animals, our water, our culture, our homes are all here since time immemorial. We will never abandon our children to live in a world with no clean water. We uphold our ancestral responsibilities. There will be no pipelines on Wet’suwet’en territory.”
Police were deployed in military garb, armed with assault weapons and dog teams, and enforced a media and communications blackout at the site. First, a cabin was breached with an axe and dog unit. Moments later, a separate cabin built on Coastal GasLink’s proposed drill pad site was breached with a chainsaw while snipers aimed at the door. RCMP did not have warrants required to enter either dwelling. After raiding Coyote Camp, police swept through Gidimt’en Checkpoint and made four more arrests, including Sleydo’s partner, Cody Merriman (Haida nation), legal observers, and accredited journalists who were there to witness the events.
Gidimt’en camp strongly condemns the repeated violations of Wet’suwet’en jurisdiction and Wet’suwet’en law in the middle of unprecedented climate-induced floods, storms, and a provincial state of emergency. Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs released a statement today declaring “RCMP are not welcome on our territories.” All Wet’suwet’en Clans have rejected the Coastal GasLink fracked gas pipeline, which has no authority to operate on Wet’suwet’en Yintah.
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