Police in North Dakota surrounded hundreds of water protectors fighting construction of the Dakota Access pipeline on a highway bridge and fired a water cannon, tear gas, concussion grenades, and rubber bullets. During the assault, which lasted for hours, the police also threatened the group with a long-range acoustic device to further disorient them. Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s emergency medical services deployed to treat dozens of individuals with injuries.
For months, protests, including nonviolent direct action, have taken place with indigenous people, who will suffer the worst impact, at the forefront. An encampment called Sacred Stone Camp near the Standing Rock reservation has stood as a grand example of resistance.
On November 20, according to a press statement from the Sacred Stone Camp, water protectors attempted to remove “burnt military vehicles” that police “chained to barriers weeks ago,” which were blocking traffic on Highway 1806. The effort was undertaken with a semi-truck, and water protectors hoped to “clear the road to improve access to the camp for emergency services.”