Bernie Sanders joined protests in support of Native American activists who are striving to stop construction of a North Dakota pipeline.
The former US Democratic presidential candidate called on President Obama to take action against the controversial Dakota Access oil pipeline during a rally outside the White House on Tuesday alongside members of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and other tribal nations.
The protest was one of about 200 “#NoDAPL” events which took place across the US on Tuesday
Press TV reports:
Sanders joined hundreds of activists, including members of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and other tribal nations, who were gathering right outside the White House in Washington, DC on Tuesday.
The tribes maintain the project will disturb sacred sites. On September 3, several Native Americans clashed with security officers near the construction site after bulldozers had destroyed sacred tribal sites.
There are also fears that the project could endanger drinking water for thousands of tribal members and millions more downstream.
“This pipeline must be stopped!” the Vermont senator shouted. “Stop the pipeline, respect Native American rights and let us move forward to transform our energy systems away from fossil fuels.”
“We cannot allow our drinking water to be poisoned so that a handful of fossil fuel companies can make even more in profits,” Sanders told the cheering crowd.
He also called on President Barack Obama to “ensure that this pipeline gets a full environmental and cultural impact analysis.”
In Atlanta, protesters were holding signs and banners and chanting “Oil Kills.”
“We were all moved by the spirit to be here,” said Linda James Thomas, 59, who attended the rally.
In Ohio, nearly 100 protesters gathered at a Cleveland intersection with some of them clutching bunches of sage and beating drums.
“People are sick of being run roughshod over by corporations,” Tracey Hill, 46, a Cleveland resident said.
The 1,100-mile (1,770-km) pipeline is a $3.7-billion project which would be the first to transport crude oil from Bakken shale, a vast oil formation in North Dakota, to refineries in the US Gulf Coast.