ILPS in Canada stands with Wet’sewet’en against the Coastal Gas Pipeline
The International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS) in Canada stands in solidarity with the Unist’ot’en Camp and the Wet’sewet’en people in their struggle to defend their traditional and unceded territories from development aggression and capitalist plunder.
For more than eight years a checkpoint and healing centre established by the Unist’ot’en clan of the Wet’sewet’en nation has blocked numerous pipelines from crossing their territories (located in the province of British Columbia (BC) in western Canada, as this part of Turtle Island is referred to). But with provincial government approval of the Coastal Gaslink Pipeline, a $6 billion project to move fracked gas from northern BC to the port city of Kitimat for export, the Wet’sewet’en are facing a new threat to their rights and their lands. The pipeline is being developed by a consortium that includes Shell, PETRONAS, PetroChina, Mitsubishi Corporation and KOGAS.
The decision to issue permits for the pipeline clearly violates the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People to which Canada is a signatory and which the New Democratic Party (NDP) Provincial Government has committed to upholding. No Free Prior and Informed Consent has been given by the Wet’sewet’en people for this project which crosses their unceded traditional territories. Nonetheless on December 14 the Supreme Court of British Columbia issued an injunction giving the green light to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to remove a gate erected by the Unist’ot’en Camp to control access to their territories.
The fact that the Provincial Government and Colonial Courts continue to push through this project, despite their posturing in support of Indigenous peoples rights, demonstrates the hypocrisy of imperialism and the degree to which the need of the system to generate profits trumps all other considerations. As imperialism slips into deeper and deeper systemic crisis, ramped up plunder and exploitation become necessary to keep the system afloat. And now, as has been the case for 500 hundred years of the development of capitalism and imperialism, Indigenous and colonized people pay the highest price for their resistance to the system.
But resistance continues. From Wet’sewet’en Territory on Turtle Island to the jungles of India to the mountainous areas of Mindanao in the Philippines, to the Sierra Madre de Chiapas, to the olive groves of Palestine, Indigenous people are resisting the system designed to destroy them and protecting the future of us all by protecting the land.
ILPS stands in solidarity militant solidarity with the Unist’ot’en Camp and the Wet’sewet’en people. ILPS is an international alliance of more than 300 mass organizations from 38 countries around the world. Member organizations of the ILPS have been and will continue to be active in solidarity actions and in building mass political support for this struggle. We remain alert and prepared to mobilize if the RCMP and the imperialist Canadian state seek to enforce this injunction!