Press Release from Gidimt’en Checkpoint
NOVEMBER 14, 2021
This morning, members of the Gidimt’en Clan evicted Coastal GasLink (CGL) employees from unceded Wet’suwet’en territory, upholding ancient Wet’suwet’en trespass laws and an eviction notice first served to CGL in 2020 by the Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs.
Employees were granted 8 hours to peacefully evacuate the area, before the main road into the Lhudis Bin territory of the Gidimt’en clan was closed.
Sleydo’, Gidimt’en spokesperson, commented on the eviction enforcement:
“The Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs have never ceded, surrendered, or lost in war, title to this territory. That means that what they say goes. The eviction order from January 4th, 2020 says that CGL has to remove themselves from the territory and not return. They have been violating this law for too long.”
Today also marks Day 50 of the establishment of Coyote Camp, where Gidimt’en members, under the direction of Chief Woos, have reoccupied Cas Yikh territory and succesfully blocked Coastal Gaslink’s efforts to drill beneath Wet’suwet’en Headwaters.
In early 2020, Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs from all five clans of the nation issued and enforced an eviction notice against CGL, sparking nationwide solidarity protests and paralyzing pipeline work throughout Wet’suwet’en land.
Today, November 14, 2021, the Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs’ eviction was again enforced.
The 1997 Supreme Court of Canada ruling in the Delgamuukw-Gisdaywa court case affirmed that Aboriginal title – the right to exclusively use and occupy land – has never been extinguished across 55,000km2 of Wet’suwet’en and Gitxsan territories. Despite this, in 2019 and again in 2020, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) have trespassed onto Wet’suwet’en territory and undertaken a series of militarized assaults, enacting violent arrests and following the orders of fossil fuel behemoth TC Energy.
“Wetlands have been destroyed. Our animals have been sick. We need to protect what is left for all the future generations. Wet’suwet’en law pre-dates Colonial Law. It has existed since time began in our territories, and we have that same fighting spirit that our ancestors fought so hard to keep alive in us so that we would be able to defend our future generations, this land and this water.”
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