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News Release

Fossil Free Media

More Line 3 water protectors who allegedly stood with the Anishinaabe people in their homelands against the Line 3 pipeline had their charges dropped on May 10th. Over 900 people were arrested trying to stop the pipeline which violated the treaty rights of the Anishinaabe people, increases human trafficking of Indigenous people, and has damaged the Manoomin, or wild rice beds and water sources they depend on for survival. To the local Anishinaabe, manoomin is more than a food staple but a plant species with rights.

Studies show that when men come into Indigenous communities for oil and gas work, the risk of violence against Native women and girls increases dramatically; indeed, women in Minnesota have reported violence from men along Line 3, from intimidation to sexual assault. In February 2021, seven men were arrested in a sex trafficking sting in Itasca County, Minn., and two of those were pipeline workers. Just a few months later, two more pipeline workers were arrested after another sex trafficking sting operation in Beltrami County.

While these water protectors' charges were dropped, hundreds of water protectors still await trial for standing on the unceded land of the Anishinaabe, many facing felony charges.

For more information on the Drop the Charges campaign visit weprotectthewater.org.

STATEMENT FROM WATER PROTECTORS

On May 10th, charges were dropped for a group of folx who allegedly set sail on Good Trouble last summer to stop Line 3. The group came from many different walks of life, but chose to answer Indigenous calls to come to the frontlines because they felt they could not be bystanders as industry and collective greed drives us all further into a climate emergency and the threat of extinction.“We are proud to have stood in solidarity with the Anishinaabe people and do our small part in saying that Enbridge Energy Partners should not be allowed to further destroy the earth. Enbridge, with a history of over a billion dollars of damage to Anishinaabe waters and lands, is guilty of climate crimes against humanity and all beings. The police and judicial system are directly implicated with this subjugation of Mother Earth and her Indigenous caretakers, having received what we now understand to be $8.6 million dollars from a private company to terrorize water protectors.

In the face of a global climate crisis, our governing bodies have chosen to protect the interests of capital, not humanity. We live by the delusion that profit is boundless, while the resources that sustain us, our water, our land, fossilized fuels deep underground, even our own families – are very much finite. To the prosecutors, attorney general, police officers, DNR, army corps of engineers, and President Biden– What will your legacy be, to your children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews, as we face this climate crisis together? What is it that you love, and how do you want to be known for protecting it?

What will it take for the law of the land to protect life on Earth, and the fragile human beings that we are? We urge the state to do what’s right and to drop all charges.”

Protect the sacred, Stop Line 3, DROP ALL CHARGES

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