Following discussions with the RCMP, the Wet’suwet’en First Nation groups occupying a second blockade in northwestern B.C. have announced they will allow Coastal GasLink to temporarily work behind the Unist’ot’en gate.
However, in a post to the Unist’ot’en Camp website, the group vowed “this is not over” and that a pipeline will not be built on their traditional territory.
“Our people faced an incredible risk of injury or death and that is not a risk we are willing to take for an interim injunction. The agreement we made allows Coastal GasLink to temporarily work behind the Unist’ot’en gate. This will continue to be a waste of their time and resources as they will not be building a pipeline in our traditional territory,” read the post.
On Monday, 14 people were arrested after the Mounties took apart a different gate that blocked access to an area where Coastal GasLink wants to build a natural gas pipeline.
The arrests sparked demonstrations of solidarity in cities across B.C. and Canada over the project that was initially approved last October.
Coastal GasLink’s pipeline would run through the Wet’suwet’en territory to Kitimat, B.C., where LNG Canada is building a $40-billion export facility.
B.C. Premier John Horgan confirmed that agreements were signed with the elected councils of all 20 First Nations along the path, including the Wet’suwet’en.
However, First Nation’s groups contend that the local Wet’suwet’en house chiefs, who are hereditary rather than elected band officials, have not given the project consent.
RCMP, Coastal GasLink and Wet’suwet’en chiefs are scheduled to meet again on Thursday.
With files from the Canadian Press.