Stand with Standing Rock: Sign the open letter to US Ambassador Mark Gilbert

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Dear Ambassador Gilbert

The United States Government must stand with Standing Rock in opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline

Since April this year, more than 90 First Nation groups have staged a campaign at Standing Rock in North Dakota to peacefully resist the construction of the Dakota Access pipeline and protect the lands and resources of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribes. They have spoken out against the pipeline because it threatens their water supply and many of their sacred places, including burial sites.

The pipeline will cross the junction of the Cannonball and Missouri rivers, threatening indigenous waterways and primary drinking sources. It will carry approximately 470,000 barrels per day of fracked oil, 1,172 miles from North Dakota to Illinois.

I write to you as it is crucial that the United States Government, and the world, seek justice for indigenous rights and work to uphold our sovereignty over our lands, waters and peoples.

The leadership of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribes in protecting the climate and the natural environment, while upholding justice for indigenous peoples, has mobilised a global campaign of solidarity. Thousands of people from countries around the world have joined the Standing Rock frontline resistance. In a huge show of international solidarity well over a million people have ‘checked in’ to the Standing Rock camp via a Facebook campaign to show their support for Sioux Nation, and this number is rising as we speak.

The United States Government must take urgent action at its most senior level and do everything within its powers to protect members of the Standing Rock Sioux First Nation and their supporters, whose occupation is under attack from law enforcement. Under international law, arrests should not be used to intimidate or prevent people from participating in peaceful assembly.

Furthermore, the United States Government should listen to the call of Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and the millions of people across the world who have joined their campaign, and work to stop the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline altogether.

This is an opportunity for the current administration to continue its work on honouring indigenous rights and transitioning our global economy away from fossil fuels, to ensure a stable climate for future generations.

I urge you to raise this issue with the highest levels of your government.

Yours sincerely

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