12:21 GMT06 March 2021
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    More than 100 Native Americans were arrested October 27 for protesting against the Dakota Access pipeline, while on the same day Ammon Bundy and other (white) members of a right-wing militia were acquitted of all charges related to their 41-day armed occupation of federal land in Oregon earlier this year.

    In North Dakota, the Standing Rock Sioux Native American tribe, along with a coalition of environmental activists and groups of indigenous people who have come from across the country, have been peacefully protesting the construction of the $3.8 billion, 1,200-mile pipeline which they say would ruin sacred sites near the tribe's reservation and threaten water supply.

    Thousands of people gathered in camps at the reservation and on nearby federally-owned land after the tribe's requests for an injunction to halt the pipeline project were denied in court. The tribe's leaders claim they were not properly consulted before Dakota Acess, a subsidiary of Energy Transfer Partners, was granted a permit to move forward with the project.

    The confrontation between the tribe and the federal government has continued to produce friction, which boiled over into a violent outburst in which protesters were pepper sprayed, tear gassed, shot with rubber bullets and violently arrested in a raid carried out by police outfitted in riot gear. It has been reported that more than 100 protesters were detained over a weekend.

    Outraged Americans took to social media to highlight the striking differences in the way the Native American protesters have been treated as compared to the organizers of the January standoff at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon.

    "On the same day that a jury acquitted the Bundy brothers and their fellow protesters for taking over federal land in Oregon last January, police in North Dakota today used pepper spray gas and a painful high-pitched siren, and then arrested 117 Native Americans and others for protesting a private oil pipeline across land they say belongs to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe under a 19th-century treaty," Robert Reich, secretary of labor under President Clinton, posted on Facebook on Friday.

    "In other words, it's fine to mount an armed insurrection so your cattle can graze for free on federal land, but not if you want to protect your sacred burial ground or your only source of water from a private for-profit oil pipeline company."

    ​Live from #StandingRock #NoDAPL prayer ceremony/drum circle on road blocked by police for DAPL workers- making clear who they serve&protect pic.twitter.com/tD3iUzcm3g

    ​"They are attacking us and we have no weapons… They have no right to be on this land."#NoDAPL pic.twitter.com/Ttmp6qG5kS

    Social media has become the primary source for updates on the situation North Dakota, with the hashtag #noDAPL trending on Twitter.    

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    Tags:
    Police Abuse, protest, Ammon Bundy, North Dakota, US
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