Gidimt’en land defenders seek to stop destruction of heritage site from construction of Coastal GasLink fracked gas pipeline

Published by Brent Patterson on

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Still from #WetsuwetenStrong video.

The Gidimt’en Checkpoint has posted: “Coastal GasLink wants to destroy one of our archeological heritage sites.”

The Calgary-based TC Energy-owned Coastal GasLink fracked gas pipeline would cross 190 kilometres of Wet’suwet’en territory in the Canadian province of British Columbia without the free, prior and informed consent of the Wet’suwet’en peoples. Gidimt’en is one of the five clans of the Wet’suwet’en Nation.

Their post continues: “[The company has] obtained a ‘Site Alteration Permit’ from the Oil and Gas Commission with approvals through the Archeology branch. The site is 200 meters from camp, adjacent to an ancient village site where our ancestors would harvest lamprey eel, now known as Lamprey Creek.”

On August 14, the Gidimt’en Checkpoint also noted: “We have not and will not give permission for them to destroy our artifacts and erase us from the yintah [territory].”

They add: “The site is not isolated but part of an ancient village site where our people would go to harvest lamprey eels, which are now on the species at risk list. We are still here! We refuse to become a species at risk as well. We are strong and proud and will fight for our children and future grandchildren.”

To see a 5-minute video of their visit to this site, please click here.

The Wet’suwet’en have been subjected to two militarized RCMP police raids – in January 2019 and February 2020 – that resulted in the arrests of 36 land defenders.

Following that first raid, the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination passed this resolution calling for the RCMP to be withdrawn from Wet’suwet’en territory, but within weeks the British Columbia government approved the funds for the second RCMP raid against the land defenders.

Between January 2019 and April 2021, the RCMP has been allocated almost $20 million in public funds to police Wet’suwet’en territory.

For updates, please see the Gidimt’en Checkpoint on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Wet’suwet’en solidarity protest on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, January 2019.

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