The last remaining Dakota Access pipeline protestors were cleared from their encampment yesterday, as police and the National Guard marched in and arrested 33 people. The Guardian described the operation at the Oceti Sakowin camp as a “military-style takeover.” Authorities had placed an eviction deadline on the area for the day before.
Thousands of activists and demonstrators had been gathering in the area since this summer, protesting the construction of a gas pipeline that will run near the Standing Rock Sioux reservation. Leaders from the Native American tribe say it threatens their water supply and desecrates their land.
Earlier this week, government forces surrounded the camp as the eviction deadline loomed, and many left by Thursday.
According to witnesses, officers wore military fatigues and riot gear as they marched on camp. Large construction equipment destroyed the structures demonstrators had built there. Some of the activists had set fire to other structures.
In January, Pres. Trump signed a directive to expedite construction of the pipeline, undoing Obama administration’s policy.