In support of their kin in the front lines of the anti-fracking demonstrations against SouthWestern Energy Company (SWN Resources), a traditional Indigenous longhouse has been erected near the New Brunswick legislature.
SWN has been in conflict with the Elsipogtog and Mi’kmaq First Nations – and defended by the Mi’kmaq Warrior Society and its allies – since June of this year.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) moved into the warrior camp and blockade last Thursday, which led to over forty arrests as activists tried to defend their traditional territory from potential fracking to remove shale gas.
The longhouse, a symbol of traditional governing structures and a gathering place, was erected over the weekend. A traditional Sacred Fire burned inside. Demonstrators on site also plan on erecting tipis for each nation embroiled in this anti-fracking fight.
So far, the city of Fredericton has yet to rule as to whether the longhouse will be able to stand. The New Brunswick legislature sits against on November 5, 2013, though activists have pledged to keep the longhouse standing and a symbol of tradition and resistance.
More to come.
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