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Water Protectors Arrested as Indigenous Leaders Continue Struggle Against Enbridge Line 3

HeadlineMar 26, 2021

In northern Minnesota, witnesses say police arrested more than two dozen water protectors Thursday as they took nonviolent direct action to stop construction of Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline.

Police officer: “OK, you guys are all under arrest for unlawful assembly and trespass. Are you going to come out on your own free will?”

Tara Houska: “This is our land. It’s Anishinaabe territory.”

Police officer: “Yes or no?”

Tara Houska: “This is our land. It’s Anishinaabe territory. That’s the answer you get to the question that you asked.”

If completed, Enbridge Line 3 would carry more than 750,000 barrels of tar sands oil a day through fragile ecosystems — endangering lakes, rivers and wild rice beds. Construction crews were idled Thursday for more than four hours after land defenders locked their arms together as Indigenous water protectors sang and prayed. This is Indigenous activist and lawyer Tara Houska addressing the Biden administration.

Tara Houska: “We’re asking this administration, just like we asked the administrations prior, to do something different and to stand with Indigenous people. … It’s not enough to just cancel one project while others go through. One sacred is not more than another. None of us are sacrifice zones. And it’s time for change. We said no, and we’re still saying no.”

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