February 7th updates from Unist’ot’enCamp and Gidimten:
The RCMP raid continues today as militarized, heavily-armed police backed up with K9 dogs, heavy equipment, and helicopters move further into Unist’ot’en territory. As we write this federal police are currently raiding the Gidimt’en checkpoint at 44km.
6:15pm: We are hearing that 30 RCMP are surrounding #Wetsuwetsuweten Hereditary Chiefs and supporters at 27KM who have blocked the road. Among them, Dini’ze Smogelgem, Dini’ze Dsta’hyl, and Tsake’ze Sleydo’.
Everything is quiet at @Gidimten checkpoint. Those in the cabin no longer see or hear police. It seems like the majority of the force has headed out and at least 15 RCMP have headed to 27km. The tower is still standing. The road is still blocked.
Denzel Sutherland-Wilson from the Gitxsan nation was arrested and removed from @Gidimten tower earlier today. Only those in Chief Woos’ cabin remain. The Gitxsan are the oldest allies of the #Wetsuweten.3:45pm: #RCMP are now blocked in on the forest service road at the 27km mark after people parked several vehicles sideways — preventing vehicles from passing (this is the route out to Houston) #Wetsuweten. RCMP visibly frustrated at this additional barrier.3:15pm: Anne Spice has been taken down from the tower. One person remains on top of the tower. Legal observers, @GitxsanJt, and a documentary filmmaker are still on site but far away.
2:30pm: RCMP are now using ladders to move up the wooden tower overlooking the territory. RCMP have said that the people on the tower are already under arrest and they are just trying to get them down. RCMP won’t specify what the charges are or why the people in the tower are under arrest.
2pm: The US-Canada border crossing in Mohawk territory was shut down by protests.1:55pm: Eve Saint, the daughter of @Gidimten Chief Woos, has been arrested along with one other. They were removed from the bus blocking the road. They have been walked out by RCMP. They are not hurt.
12:55pm: The metal gate at @Gidimten is down. Legal observer is trying to get RCMP badge numbers and police names but RCMP won’t respond. Some RCMP are wearing masks to cover their faces.
12:45pm: RCMP are trying to limit the visibility of the tactical team to media by surrounding a bus containing media. RCMP “have one person stationed on the other side of the flipped van. They’re the one doing the lethal overwatch. They’ve got a gun pointed at us, underneath the warrior flag,” we’ve just heard.
12:30pm: Those at @Gidimten just said the teams dropped off by the helicopters included K9 units – so they are surrounded by snipers and police dogs.
6:30 am: RCMP militarized convoy engines are running and lining up in Houston now. Their extremist force is hardly a peaceful action against our unarmed, peaceful protestors. Shame!!! – Gidimt’en Checkpoint
February 6th updates:
6:45 pm: All six people who were arrested in Gidimt’en territories this morning are being released with no charges. Three are out already.
4:44pm: Chiefs & supporters blocked the road at 27km, forcing RCMP to let Wet’suwet’en chiefs in. Clearing work has stopped at 44km. Dsta’hyl (Likht’samisyu) said the #Wetsuweten will enforce the eviction of Coastal Gaslink, with any means at their disposal.
4pm: Solidarity actions are taking place across Canada. A blockade has shut down the Port of Vancouver. Various politicians offices have been occupied. Indigenous youth are locked down at the B.C. Legislature.
2:40pm Pacific Time: People at the Gidimt’en Access Point (44 km; the site of the armed police raid in January 2019) are now confirming that they see heavy machinery approaching.
Militarized, heavily armed police units known as “tactical enforcement teams,” supported by K9 dogs and infrared camera-equipped drones, have this morning raided the Wet’suwet’en First Nation territory in central British Columbia, Canada to remove indigenous occupation aimed at preventing construction of a fracked-gas pipeline.
Between four and six people have been arrested at the blockade setup at 39KM on the Morice River Road, 27 km from the main Unist’ot’en Camp. Journalists on-site were threatened with arrest, prevented from photographing the events (including police smashing the window on a truck), and forcefully removed from the area. This is the second militarized raid on the peaceful indigenous resistance camp. The previous raid, in January 2019, was later revealed to have included “lethal overwatch”—authorization to shoot to kill. In both raids, police carried sniper and assault rifles.
The police raid Wet’suwet’en checkpoint shows they are acting as private contractors for the gas company, facilitating the plunder of stolen indigenous land and destruction of the planet for private profit.
Coastal GasLink/TC Energy is pushing through a 670-kilometer fracked gas pipeline that would carry fracked gas from Dawson Creek, B.C. to the coastal town of Kitimat, where LNG Canada’s processing plant would be located. LNG Canada is the single largest private investment in Canadian history.
Each clan within the Wet’suwet’en Nation has full jurisdiction under their law to control access to their territory. Under ‘Anuc niwh’it’en (Wet’suwet’en law) all five clans of the Wet’suwet’en have unanimously opposed all pipeline proposals and have not provided free, prior, and informed consent to Coastal Gaslink/ TransCanada to do work on Wet’suwet’en lands.
This is a developing story and we will share more information as it comes.
How to Support
Call to Action — Blockade the Colonial Institutions
Indigenous youth in solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en Nation are calling for organized, rolling occupations of MLA and MP offices, and of financial institutions tied to Coastal Gaslink pipeline corporation.
To participate, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Timeline of This Morning’s Events — Police raid Wet’suwet’en Checkpoint near Unist’ot’en camp
via Unist’ot’en Camp
- 7:48 am: RCMP are transporting the 4 arrested supporters to Houston. BC. Everyone at 39KM was arrested except media. Media that were at 39km are being driven out in a police van.
- 7:22am: 36 vehicles, 1 ambulance and heavy machinery went up from 4 KM. At least 2 bulldozers and excavator.
- 6:59 am: We have reports RCMP have headed up from town in an approximately 20+ vehicle convoy. #Wetsuweten #WetsuwetenStrong
- 6:43am: We have reports that RCMP are now blocking the forest service road at 4KM.
- 6:22am: We have lost all communication with the Gidimt’en watch post at 39KM after RCMP smashed the window of the radio vehicle. It’s still pitch black out.
- 6am: We have just heard that RCMP denied access to a reporter headed out to the camps this morning. Media exclusion zone is in full effect.
- 5:56am – The person on radio at 39km reports RCMP have broken in the windows of their vehicle.
- 5:43am – We estimate more than a dozen cops on site, with six cops surrounding the person communicating updates over radio.
- 5:30am – We’re hearing reports from the front line that some RCMP had their guns out – not pointed at people – but guns in hand.
- We’re told that even with more than a dozen vehicles out on the territory, the Houston community hall is still full of cops waiting to invade our lands.
- 5:05am – We’ve heard 13 RCMP vehicles headed up the road earlier this morning. Up to 4 arrests have been made now, and RCMP are taking down tents. Our understanding is these tents were NOT blocking the road and are not part of the injunction area.
- 4:55am – It’s not yet 5am – still totally dark out – and we’ve just heard RCMP made their first arrest at the #Wetsuweten monitoring post at 39KM. Cops are surrounding people there and beginning to clear the road to the Gidimt’en checkpoint.