The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Jennifer K. Falcon,,

Indigenous Representatives from Across the World Stand with Standing Rock During COP22 Marrakech

The press is invited to join the Standing Rock Solidarity Action on November 17th at 13:30  - inside the COP22 Blue Zone in front of the main food area.


On November 17, 2016, Representatives of Indigenous Peoples from all regions of the world representing the International Indigenous Peoples Forum on Climate Change, as well as many international allies will raise their voices in solidarity with the Standing Rock Lakota Nation in their defense of Sacred Water, and say NO to the Dakota Access pipeline (DAPL) at a direct action inside of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) COP.

Speakers will include Kevin Hart of the Assembly of First Nation of Canada, Kapupu of the Democratic Republic of Congo, as well as representatives of the Marshall Islands and the Pacific, Latina America, the Caribbean, the Arctic, and other regions of the World.

The Action will open with traditional Indigenous prayer and song as well as, share calls to action and statements in support of all frontline water protectors, not only of Standing Rock but, all Indigenous communities defending their lands and forests, protecting and defending all sacred sources of life, and our Mother Earth.

We will denounce continued inaction and violation of the Indigenous Rights of the Standing Rock Sioux peoples and all Indigenous Peoples who stand in defense of our Mother Earth.

"This pipeline black snake threatens not only the Tribe's sacred water, but it is also the source of clean water and life for 17 million people downstream. The Dakota Access pipeline will transport half a million barrels of hydraulic fractured shale oil a day, oil that will release emissions of 101,4 million tonnes CO2, as much as 30 American coal power plants, every year. The black snake represents a world out of balance which views all life as private property and looks at Mother Earth as without a soul or spirit. It is part of 'business-as-usual' with the expansion of fossil fuel development on and near Indigenous lands. It is a climate justice issue. " - Tom Goldtooth, Indigenous Environmental Network

The Dakota Access Pipeline has been one of the most critical issues raised by the Indigenous Peoples Caucus during COP22. On November 13th, the Indigenous Peoples' Forum on Climate Change issued a statement in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.

The International Indigenous Peoples` Forum on Climate Change (IIPFCC) condemns the construction of the Dakota Access pipeline and stands in solidarity with our relatives of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and all Water Protectors in opposition to this project, citing that "[t]he Dakota Access pipeline is being built on the un-ceded treaty lands of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, without their free, prior and informed consent, as is described in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in Articles 18, 19, and 32. The pipeline is also being constructed through sacred areas and ancestral burial grounds of the Standing Rock Sioux and other Indigenous Peoples of the area."

In September, Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Chairman Dave Archambault testified before the UN Human Rights Commission calling for UN enforcement of human rights law. "We call upon all member states, to condemn the destruction of our sacred places and to support our nation's efforts to ensure that our sovereign rights are respected. We ask that you call upon all parties to stop the construction of the Dakota Access pipeline and to protect the environment, our nation's future, our culture and our way of life." - Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Chairman Dave Archambault II

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of Indigenous peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, has also called on the United States to halt the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline as it poses a significant risk to the drinking water of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and threatens to destroy their burial grounds and sacred sites. "The United States should, in accordance with its commitment to implement the Declaration on the rights on Indigenous peoples, consult with the affected communities in good faith and ensure their free, and informed consent prior to the approval of any project affecting their lands, particularly in connection with extractive resource industries, " Ms. Tauli-Corpuz said.

Established in 1990 within the United States, IEN was formed by grassroots Indigenous peoples and individuals to address environmental and economic justice issues (EJ). IEN's activities include building the capacity of Indigenous communities and tribal governments to develop mechanisms to protect our sacred sites, land, water, air, natural resources, health of both our people and all living things, and to build economically sustainable communities.