Elsipogtog First Nation rally held in Edmonton's Churchill Square
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Over 100 people showed their support for Elsipogtog First Nation at a rally in Churchill Square on Friday.
Organized primarily through Facebook, the event was meant to be a peaceful rally in support of the Mi’kmaq of Elsipogtog in New Brunswick who are protesting a shale-gas exploration project.
On Thursday, local RCMP arrested dozens in the eastern province after protests became violent as a result of a police-enforced injunction to end the demonstration.
Wanting to show their support, Edmonton protestors held up signs reading words of encouragement for those in New Brunswick and chanted along to speakers at the rally, which was meant to be a peaceful one, said organizers.
“We want to send a message to the RCMP in New Brunswick that it is not acceptable,” said Freda Ballantyne, organizer of the event.
Shannon Houle, one of the speakers at the rally and who is also affiliated with Idle No More, spoke of the importance of preserving land for future generations.
“These lands, without them, we are nothing. As an indigenous person… these lands are our responsibility.”
The Edmonton protest was one of many held across the country. The group later marched to the RCMP “K” Division in Edmonton.