Police attack about 400 protestors with water cannon and tear gas
CANNONBALL, ND (Nov. 21, 2016). Police used water cannon and tear gas about 6pm in Cannonball, ND to stop demonstrators from crossing the Backwater Bridge on State Highway 1806. The bridge is near an encampment where the protestors had been demonstrating against the Dakota Access pipeline for several weeks before police forcibly removed them on Oct. 27.
The bridge is located near Lake Oahe, a Missouri River reservoir, where the federal government has stopped work on the pipeline due to environmental concerns.
Protestor Aideoneus Bishop wrote on Facebook that police shot him in the hand and back with rubber bullets and that the police used tear gas, sound cannon, flash bangs, and water cannon. Police wounded four people using rubber bullets. Police hit other demonstrators in the chest and legs with canisters.
A local gym sheltered protestors who were soaked in -4 C. weather and hit with tear gas, including 83-year-old Rema Loeb of Massachusetts. Several people required medical attention.
Energy Transfer Partners is building the 1900 km four-state pipeline to carry oil from western North Dakota to a shipping point in Illinois. The Standing Rock Sioux reservation is located near the pipeline route. The Sioux fear that a leak could contaminate their drinking water. They also claim that construction crews removed topsoil from burial grounds and cultural sites along the route.
Kelly Warren, chief executive of Energy Transfer Partners, headquartered in Dallas, stated Friday that the company will not reroute the pipeline.
Police arrested at least one demonstrator.