RCMP reviewing procedures after pipeline blockade arrests
January 15, 2019
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The RCMP will review the actions of its officers who arrested 14 people at an Indigenous pipeline blockade in northwestern British Columbia last week.
The Mounties enforced a court injunction Jan. 7 allowing Coastal GasLink workers and contractors access to a work site where a natural gas pipeline is planned. Assistant commissioner Eric Stubbs told Canadian Press the situation was challenging and emotional, and he alleges the protesters’ actions toward police ranged from passive resistance to “actual assaultive behaviour.”
He says one person secured themselves to a barricade, while two others attached themselves to the underside of a bus that was blocking access to a bridge and another was suspended in a hammock from the bridge.
Stubbs says he understands there are concerns about the RCMP’s actions and its review will produce recommendations to address any issues, though he says none have been found yet.
The RCMP reached an agreement with Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs last Thursday to allow Coastal GasLink workers across the bridge, and Stubbs says the Mounties will bring in a temporary detachment to the area.