This is real breaking news, reaching you very soon after it was delivered to the White House. i am working intently on increasing the number of Senators registering this kind of thought, and have recommended that they make their case also clear directly to the head of the Army Corps of Engineers as well as to the President.
November 30, 2016
The White House
Washington D.C. 20500
Dear Mr. President:
I am gravely concerned about the recent escalation of violence in North Dakota against members of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and those standing in solidarity with them. When violent confrontations occurred their earlier this fall, I urged your administration to step in, and was thankful that you quickly put a halt to the project until the agencies could engage in renewed tribal consultation with the Standing Rock Tribe.
However, the brutality we have seen in recent days, involving rubber bullets, tear gas, and water cannons has increasingly put the health and lives of demonstrators at real risk. The current situation at Camp Oceti Sakowin is unsustainable and dangerous to everyone involved. I implore you to work with the Corps of Engineers and the Department of Justice to de-escalate the violence at the camp.
In particular, I question the decision to close the area to demonstrators on December 5, 2016. This arbitrary date is certain to escalate an already volatile situation, and I would urge you to overturn this decision by the Corps of Engineers. I ask you to see a peaceful resolution to this conflict that respects the desire of the Standing Rock Sioux to protect their water and historic sacred sites.
Thank you for your continued commitment to the needs and concerns of Indian Country and for your attention to this urgent matter.
United States Senator
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