Federal Judge Rules Against Halting DAPL Construction
by Stephen Lendman
On Monday, US District Court Judge James Boasberg denied a Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe request to halt construction of environmentally destructive Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) construction on sacred ancestral land.
Last Tuesday, following Trump’s executive order, the US Army Corps of Engineers granted final easement to complete the pipeline.
Both tribes now seek an injunction blocking it. On February 27, a hearing is set in Washington, DC.
On February 10, the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe sought a temporary restraining order (TRO) and preliminary injunction to block DAPL construction – based on their First Amendment and Religious Freedom Restoration Act rights.
According to Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal chairman Harold Frazier, “(t)he Corps’ decision to grant the easement is an affront to the fundamental principles of religious freedom in the Constitution.”
“It represents the continued shameful 200-year campaign to extinguish the Lakota peoples’ religion, spirituality and culture.” It threatens their vital Lake Oahe water source.
“Clean water is indispensable for our existence and the practice of our religion,” Frazier added. “If we let this violation stand, history will judge us, as well as all those who supported this terrible violation of our Native rights and to our human rights.”
Representing tribe members, attorney Nicole Ducheneaux said “(t)he issues brought forth in the motion demonstrate the immediate threat to our religious rights.”
“This is a struggle we as Lakota people have resisted since first contact and that we will continue to resist.”
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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