Burnaby Mountain update: police storm camp, non-lethal rounds used against treesitter

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20th November 2014

New Lockdown after Treesitter Shot with “Less Than Lethal” Round

[UPDATE: Recent arrest number is around 18 as of 2:30pm]

Local activist and video journalist Devin Gillan has reported that RCMP officers admit shooting the treesitter with a “less-than-lethal” shotgun round. (The same thing occurred when police extracted protestors from the Willits treesit in California.)

The Burnaby Mountain protest persists, however, as one protestor has locked herself to a cement block on site, and refuses to move.

Police are reportedly shoving people towards a new cordoned off area.

According to Burnaby Mountain Updates:

“RCMP arrests on Burnaby Mountain will not deter opposition to Kinder Morgan

“So far, as of 2 pm, RCMP have arrested fifteen Burnaby Mountain land defenders standing upto Kinder Morgan’s injunction. Twelve of those fifteen have already been released, with minimal civil contempt of court charges. The three others are visible to our legal and jail support team. None have been taken to jail.

“Those arrested include and pictured here are the brave land defenders Erin, Kaleb, Adam and Sut-lut who have all been maintaining the camp for months, as well as our tree-sitter friend who has been camped out above borehole 2.

“Hundreds of supporters are on-site to witness and to send a clear message that the arrests will not deter opposition and this pipeline will not get built!”

More than 70% of the residents of Burnaby disapprove of Kinder Morgan’s TransMountain pipeline passing through Burnaby Mountain, and stress that the pipeline is passing unlawfully through public lands. First Nations have demonstrated that it is unceded land, and Kinder Morgan is not abiding by the treaties in place.

The pipeline threatens to increase oil flow from the Alberta Tar Sands to the Pacific coast via British Columbia threefold.

 

Treesitter in Tense Standoff as RCMP Storms Burnaby Mountain Camp

protestors lock arms as the police move in

Sirens are blaring on Burnaby Mountain this morning as the Canadian RCMP storm the blockade against the TransMountain pipeline.

According to the Burnaby Mountain Updates Facebook page:

“9 am update from Burnaby Mountain. Four arrests confirmed including two caretakers who have been holding down for months Kaleb and Erin, six additional people are holding in the campsite and refusing to leave. There is a public rally—which is completely safe—on the other side of the police line, 30-40 people are here already, everyone please come to the hill. Police have blocked road to traffic so you need to walk in and you will be informed to stay within ‘protest area’.”

According to the most recent updates, the number of arrested has reached elevent, including Kaleb and Erin who have stayed at the camp for months, and Adam Gold from the Heiltsuk First Nation. Donate to the legal fund here.

Adam Gold of the Heiltsuk First Nation being arrested
Adam Gold of the Heiltsuk First Nation being arrested

According to the latest reports, the treesitter has warned RCMP officers against shooting him with beanbag munitions, and is not wearing a harness. He has threatened to jump if police attempt to remove him. Police with climbing gear are currently on site.

First Nations members have arrived with drums, and have joined the protest.

Burnaby Mountain is the site of Kinder Morgan’s projected TransMountain’s pipeline, which would triple the amount of oil moving from the Tar Sands to the Pacific Ocean.

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An injunction against the protest camp was granted to Kinder Morgan on Monday, but the RCMP did not move into the camp until this morning.

According to Staff Sergeant Major John Buis of the RCMP, “RCMP have strived [sic] to balance the need to maintain public safety and civil order with a democratic right to hold demonstrations. In many cases, the Burnaby RCMP has facilitated that right, and in the case of the protesters on Burnaby Mountain, we have established a lawful assembly area for those who wish to continue to protest peacefully and lawfully.”

Protestors assert that the RCMP is acting violently in a colonial reaction to a peaceful encampment on public lands (unceded Indigenous lands) that has the support of over 70 percent of the local population.

There is a livestream broadcasting the events as they unfold.

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Land defenders at Burnaby Mountain are calling on people to come and support the camp at the site. There is a “safe zone” for protesters, and the road in is still accessible at the moment.