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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

12/4/2013 (8 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Mostly indigenous folk from surrounding areas say they refuse to back down

Fracking, a process that uses greats amount of water to extract oil is seen by many as a salvation for some - and damnation for others. Many says the process takes its toll on the fragile ecology. Protesters, led by the Mi'kmaq indigenous people have set rubber tires alight to block a New Brunswick highway in Canada.

At sundown, dances were held around the burning tires at the blockade. Drumming and singing could be heard in live video streams broadcast from the site.

At sundown, dances were held around the burning tires at the blockade. Drumming and singing could be heard in live video streams broadcast from the site.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

12/4/2013 (8 months ago)

Published in Americas

Keywords: Fracking, Canada, New Brunswick, Mi'kmaq, indigenous people, protests


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The demonstration was in response to a judge's decision to extend an injunction limiting protests against a Texas-based shale gas exploration company.  

"This isn't just a native issue," Edgar Clair of Elsipogtog First Nation, at the site of the blockade on Route 11 says. "But the natives want the world to know that this is Mi'kmaq territory, and they won't back down, and they won't abide by this injunction." 

Protesters blocked Route 11, the latest front line in this conflict over shale gas exploration after the Royal Canadian Mounted Police arrested several people on or near the highway. Some of the officers are reportedly armed with rubber pellet guns used for crowd control.

"Our people are tired, and this is a response to the justice system," said an Elsipogtog community member who wished to remain anonymous said. "We're tired of not being taken seriously and that the treaties we agreed to are not being taken seriously."

At sundown, dances were held around the burning tires at the blockade. Drumming and singing could be heard in live video streams broadcast from the site.

Judge Paulette Garnett ruled to continue through Dec. 17 the injunction obtained by SWN Resources Canada against a coalition of protesters led by Mi'kmaq indigenous people from the Elsipogtog First Nation. The decision was rendered in a courtroom in Fredericton, the capital of New Brunswick.

The injunction is intended to keep protesters from interfering with SWN's seismic testing work. It requires that demonstrators remain at least 250 yards in front of or behind contractors and their vehicles and 20 yards to the side.

The Mi'kmaq argues that the exploration work is being conducted on land that they never ceded to the crown when they signed treaties with the British in the 18th century.

New Brunswick's government granted SWN licenses to explore for shale gas in 2010 in exchange for investment in the province worth approximately $44 million in U.S. dollars.

The tribe members here fear that exploration will inevitably lead to gas extraction by means of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in which water and chemicals are injected into shale rock to release gas deposits trapped inside. Opponents say fracking can contaminate groundwater.

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Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


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Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for August 2014
Refugees:
That refugees, forced by violence to abandon their homes, may find a generous welcome and the protection of their rights.
Oceania: That Christians in Oceania may joyfully announce the faith to all the people of that region.



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