21 Peaceful Protestors Arrested During Prayer Ceremony at Standing Rock

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Yesterday 21 people were arrested by police in riot gear in North Dakota while protesting peacefully against the Dakota Access pipeline.

According to one of the land defenders:

“We had a really nice ceremony. And then we looked, and over that way, and the police—there was a few police. And the next thing I knew, there were like 40 police, and they were all dressed in riot gear. We did exactly what we were told to do, except the ones who were in the road, just to tell everybody, ‘Keep moving. Keep moving. Keep moving.’ And I’ve never in my life seen a gun in real life. And I’ve never had a gun pointed at me. And we all went—I went into shock.”

The officers responsible were from the Morton County Sheriff’s Department, the same department that sent officers armed with mace and attack dogs against the protestors earlier this month. This time they sent police in riot gear, arriving in armored vehicles.

The protestors were unarmed and were conducting a peaceful prayer ceremony:

According to a press release issued by the sheriff’s department, “a protestor on horseback charged at an officer in what was viewed as an act of aggression.”

Although police and private contractors have shown aggression towards the protestors all demonstrations have been enormously peaceful.

A few of the protestors taking part in the movement have asked for continued peace and solidarity via social media:

Tell the Obama Administration to Abandon the Dakota Access Pipeline

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