Calls on the Army Corps to reaffirm their position of no forcible removal
Published November 29, 2016
CANNON BALL, NORTH DAKOTA— Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Chairman Dave Archambault II was quick to respond to North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple’s executive order calling for an emergency evacuation of the water protector campers at Oceti Sakowin camp, near Standing Rock Reservation. Here is Chairman Archambault’s statement issued Monday evening:
“Today, Gov. Dalrymple issued an executive order calling for mandatory evacuation of all campers located on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) lands, also known as the Oceti Sakowin camp. This state executive order is a menacing action meant to cause fear, and is a blatant attempt by the state and local officials to usurp and circumvent federal authority. The USACE has clearly stated that it does not intend to forcibly remove campers from federal property. The Governor cites harsh weather conditions and the threat to human life.
As I have stated previously, the most dangerous thing we can do is force well-situated campers from their shelters and into the cold. If the true concern is for public safety than the Governor should clear the blockade and the county law enforcement should cease all use of flash grenades, high-pressure water cannons in freezing temperatures, dog kennels for temporary human jails, and any harmful weaponry against human beings. This is a clear stretch of state emergency management authority and a further attempt to abuse and humiliate the water protectors. The State has since clarified that they won’t be deploying law enforcement to forcibly remove campers, but we are wary that this executive order will enable further human rights violations.”
The Chairman called on the Army Corps to affirm their previous statement regarding no forcible removal.