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Masked Militants March in Anti-Pipeline Protest

Indigenous

As many as 1,000 people gathered in downtown Vancouver on Monday, Jan 14, 2013, to protest the Enbridge hearings. Organized by Rising Tide and a coalition of community groups, the demonstration occurred on the first evening of hearings held by the National Energy Board’s joint review panel in the city. Citing security reasons, the panel hearings are closed to the public and only those who have registered to make submissions are allowed entry.

Masked Militants March in Anti-Pipeline Protest

by Zig Zag, Warrior Publications, January 15, 2013

As many as 1,000 people gathered in downtown Vancouver on Monday, Jan 14, 2013, to protest the Enbridge hearings. Organized by Rising Tide and a coalition of community groups, the demonstration occurred on the first evening of hearings held by the National Energy Board’s joint review panel in the city. Citing security reasons, the panel hearings are closed to the public and only those who have registered to make submissions are allowed entry.

The initial rally point was at Victory Square, a dimly lit park in downtown Vancouver. The weather was cold and rainy, at times snowing. Many of the speakers were Indigenous people, including an opening statement and prayer by local Coast Salish people, as well as some participants in the recent Idle No More rallies.

It was at this time that I noticed a group of perhaps 25 people dressed in all-black clothing and wearing masks. The Vancouver police attending the rally point also seemed to notice them at this time, for soon there were an equal number of cops standing in groups around the black-clad protesters. These were members of the ‘Public Safety Unit’ (PSU), used by Vancouver police for crowd control.

After several speeches and drum songs, the rally moved onto Cambie Street and began moving west on Hastings, towards the Sheraton Wall Centre, a hotel complex in downtown Vancouver where the Enbridge hearings were occurring. At this point, people had been gathered for nearly 1.5 hours.

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