STORY: For 56 days, Gidimt’en land defenders (under the direction of Hereditary Chief Woos) re-occupied their ancestral Cas Yikh territory, blocking the Coastal Gaslink pipeline from drilling beneath Wet’suwet’en headwaters. The land reclamation became known as Coyote Camp, and was established to protect the sacred Wedzin Kwa (river) of the Wet’suwet’en people.
The November 19th raid involved about 50 police, including 20 tactical officers in green military fatigues, with assault weapons and attack dogs who surrounded the camp. During the raid, the RCMP breached two small structures – a cabin built on Coastal Gaslink’s proposed drill pad site, and a nearby “tiny house” where this footage was recorded.
The police attempted to enter the tiny house, but Cas Yikh wing chief Sleydo’ demanded to see a warrant. Police then broke down the door with an axe and a chainsaw belonging to the land defenders, and arrested everyone inside. Police also cut the camp’s satellite internet connection.
Filmmaker Michael Toledano and photojournalist Amber Bracken were arrested and incarcerated for four days after recording images of this police action. A total of 11 people were arrested. This followed a raid the previous day on another part of the territory, in which 15 people were violently arrested, including a filmmaker. A total of 32 people have been arrested since the re-occupation began.
Camp Spokesperson Molly Wickham (Sleydo’), land defender Shay Lynn Sampson and filmmaker Michael Toledano are available to do live interviews.