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American Indians tribes to Protest against Trump Administration and its approval of Dakota Access oil pipeline in Washington

The protest comes as a federal judge in Washington is weighing a request by the Standing Rock and Cheyenne River Sioux tribes to halt construction of the last section of the Dakota Access pipeline pending the outcomes of their lawsuit seeking to stop the project

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FILE - Oscar High Elk, 26, of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, prays as he and other members of the tribe prepare to evacuate from the main opposition camp against the Dakota Access oil pipeline near Cannon Ball
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Washngton, March 7, 2017: Members of American Indian tribes from around the country are bringing their frustrations with the Trump administration and its approval of the Dakota Access oil pipeline to the nation’s capital.

Tribal members were planning to gather at the National Mall on Tuesday to begin four days of activities culminating with a Friday march on the White House dubbed the “Native Nations March on DC.”

Tribal members and supporters plan to camp each day on the National Mall, with teepees, a ceremonial fire, cultural workshops and speakers. Native American leaders also plan to lobby lawmakers to protect tribal rights.

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On Friday, a march of about 2 miles is planned from the Army Corps of Engineers office to the White House, where a rally is scheduled. Organizers didn’t immediately have an estimate on how many people or tribes planned to take part.

“We are calling on all our Native relatives and allies to rise with us,” said Dave Archambault, the chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe. “We must march against injustice. Native nations cannot continue to be pushed aside to benefit corporate interests and government whim.”

The White House didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

The protest comes as a federal judge in Washington is weighing a request by the Standing Rock and Cheyenne River Sioux tribes to halt construction of the last section of the Dakota Access pipeline pending the outcomes of their lawsuit seeking to stop the project. The tribes say that section of the pipeline, which will pass under Lake Oahe, a large Missouri River reservoir, will threaten their water supply, sacred sites and religious rights. The judge is expected to rule this week.

Friday’s march will begin at the Corps of Engineers office because the agency manages the Missouri River and last month gave the pipeline developer, Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners, permission to finish the project. The company expects to wrap up the work and have oil flowing this month.

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The two tribes feel they weren’t properly consulted about the pipeline route, which the government disputes. They also maintain their treaty rights were violated when the government changed its mind about doing further environmental study of the Lake Oahe crossing after President Donald Trump took office in January.

“This fight against the Dakota Access pipeline has been the tip of the spear of a powerful global movement calling for the United States government and Donald Trump to respect indigenous nations and people in our right to water, land, sovereignty, and culture,” said Dallas Goldtooth, an organizer with the Indigenous Environmental Network. (VOA)

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White House Denies Any Direct Talks Yet Between Trump And Kim

No direct talks yet between Trump, Kim: White House

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Donald Trump is the President of U.S.
FILE IMAGE- Donald Trump

The White House has denied any direct talks yet between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, though Washington has spoken to Pyongyang “at the highest levels”.

The White House statement on Tuesday came minutes after Trump seemingly hinted that he has already spoken with Kim, Xinhua news agency reported.

When asked by reporters if he had spoken directly with Kim, Trump had said “yes”.

In the statement, issued after the confusing incident, the White House said, “In regards to talks with leader Kim Jong-un, the President said the administration has had talks at the highest levels” and added that they were not with him directly.

On Tuesday afternoon, Trump himself also said that Washington and Pyongyang have already started direct talks at “very high levels,” without specifying how “high” the level was.

Kim Jong-un And Donald Trump
Kim Jong-un And Donald Trump

“We have had direct talks at very high levels, extremely high levels with North Korea,” Trump said. He might have hinted at CIA Director Mike Pompeo’s reportedly top-secret visit to North Korea over Easter weekend as his envoy.

The trip made by Pompeo was an effort to lay the groundwork for direct talks between the leaders of the two countries. No official confirmation of Pompeo’s visit has come yet.

Trump was expected to meet Kim in May or early June. The venue of the meeting was still to be decided. Trump said that five sites were being weighed and none of them were located in the US.

Also Read: China And Russia Accused of Manipulating Their Currencies By Trump

Tension on the Korean Peninsula has thawed over the last few months. The South and North have agreed to hold an inter-Korean summit on April 27, the first meeting between the leaders of the two sides in 11 years.

“They do have my blessing to discuss the end of the war,” said Trump on Tuesday, referring to the summit.

The 1950-1953 Korean war ended in an armistice. The Korean Peninsula remains technically in a state of war.  IANS