A small group of protesters gathered outside Premiere John Horgan’s constituency office Saturday afternoon to voice their concerns with the Coastal GasLink pipeline.
The group joins a series of other protests that have taken place across Canada following the forceful removal of indigenous protesters by the RCMP earlier this week due to them violating a court-ordered injunction.
“Indigenous people deserve the right to have consultation, and while we don’t have consultation with Indigenous people, and people in regards to environmental movements, I think we forget about our future,” said Clayton Leachman.
“Our question is why Mr. Horgan is moving forward… we ask Mr. Horgan to just say no.”
The group of eight also cited environmental concerns and worries over the endangered southern resident killer whale population.
Trans Canada’s Coastal GasLink pipeline would bring natural gas from the Dawson Creek to a facility near Kitimat where LNG Canada will prepare it for export to global markets.
Fourteen protesters were arrested after RCMP went through their checkpoint.
Prior to the incident the RCMP released a statement saying they were working in their jurisdiction enforcing the injunction and that following a case a new trial, that was never held, would determine aboriginal title to the land. They added that as it was not held and aboriginal title to the land, and which Indigenous nation holds it, had not been determined.
Members of the Wet’suwet’en nation said that the injuction is against Truth and Reconciliation and The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which Canada signed onto at the U.N., but has not ratified.
On Thursday Hereditary chiefs of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation reached a deal with the RCMP to allow a natural gas company access across a bridge that had been blocked in their territory.
However, they stressed that it is not a deal with the company and the hereditary chiefs are opposed to a pipeline project planned on their territory by the company.
With files from the Canadain Press