dakota access pipeline protests
At least three people connected with the Standing Rock protests of the Dakota Access Pipeline have been questioned by the FBI, The Guardian has confirmed, though the nature of their investigation is unclear. However, the FBI agents involved were reportedly pulled from domestic terror investigations, sparking fears that the protest movement may be targeted as an extremist group.
"The idea that the government would attempt to construe this indigenous-led nonviolent movement into some kind of domestic terrorism investigation is unfathomable to me," said civil rights attorney Lauren Regan, who is offering legal counsel to the protesters who were contacted. "It's outrageous, it's unwarranted ... and it's unconstitutional." At least one of the three is a Native American.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced it will grant an easement for the pipeline construction to continue, reversing the Obama administration's decision that an alternate route should be found to avoid work on sacred Standing Rock Sioux lands and beneath a tribal water source.