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Court Postpones Decision on DAPL Construction Stoppage as Standing Rock Stands Strong

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Standing Rock Sioux Chairman David Archambault II on October 5 reiterated his commitment to keeping the Dakota Access oil pipeline away from the tribe’s drinking water after a U.S. District Court postponed ruling on a request for a permanent halt to the construction along its designated route a half mile from the reservation.

“Millions of people across the country and world, more than 300 federally-recognized tribes, members of Congress and dozens of city governments across the country stand with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline,” Archambault said in a statement after the court postponed a decision, leaving the temporary injunction in place. “We stand together in peaceful prayer and solidarity because this pipeline threatens the lives of the more than seventeen million people who rely on the Missouri River for their water. This pipeline has already destroyed the burial places of our Lakota and Dakota ancestors. If construction continues, our people stand to lose even more of our sacred places and cultural objects.”

The tribe had requested an injunction that would halt construction of the pipeline while it appeals Judge James Boasberg’s initial denial. While the construction has been stopped temporarily by a second court ruling while the federal government reevaluates the procedure, work could resume once a final decision is made.

The 1,172-mile-long, $3.8 billion project has been under contention since it was first proposed in 2014 by Energy Transfer Partners. Thousands of people have been camped near the confluence of the Missouri and Cannonball rivers to protect the water.

Archambault also invoked the trust responsibility held by the administration of President Barack Obama and all federal agencies to honor treaties signed in the 1800s.

“The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers approved the pipeline without consulting with our tribe,” Archambault said. “The approval of this pipeline by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is a violation of our treaty rights and we will not stop fighting until our lands, people, water and sacred places are permanently protected.”