According to leaked documents ETP hired security firm TigerSwan, which was founded by retired military special forces members
, photo: AP/David Goldman
30 of May 2017 16:52:42
BISMARCK, North Dakota – A private security firm hired by the developer of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline conducted an aggressive, multifaceted operation against protesters that included a close working relationship with public law enforcement, documents obtained by an online magazine indicate.Native American groups that opposed the pipeline say the report from The Intercept lends credence to their belief that law enforcement favored private industry in the monthslong dispute. But law enforcement and Texas-based pipeline developer Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) say their concern was everyone's safety.
The relationship was heavily criticized Tuesday by the Lakota People's Law Office."Rather than one-sidedly protecting the private interests of oil corporations, these state and federal law enforcement agencies should have been also protecting the constitutional rights of those who were being criminally conspired against, disrupted, and physically attacked by the oil company's private mercenary army of Middle East-based anti-terrorist specialists," Chief Counsel Daniel Sheehan said in a statement.Indigenous Environmental Network organizer Dallas Goldtooth said in a statement that "police and security were essentially given permission to carry out war-like tactics" on protesters.One particularly violent clash happened in late November, when protesters trying to push past a blocked highway bridge were turned back by authorities using tear gas, rubber bullets and water sprays. Police said protesters were throwing rocks, asphalt and water bottles at officers.The Morton County Sheriff's Office, which spearheaded the response to the protests, said its communications with TigerSwan security weren't unusual and "gave law enforcement situational awareness in order to monitor and respond to illegal protest activity."ETP said in a statement that "the safety of our employees and the communities in which we live and work is our top priority. In order to ensure that we do have security plans in place, we do communicate with law enforcement agencies as appropriate."
This implications of this DAPL #TigerSwan leak are huge. Federal & state agencies colluding with mercenary security firm on US soil.— Dallas Goldtooth (@dallasgoldtooth) May 29, 2017