An RCMP office is set up a few kilometres past a roadblock set up at the 27-kilometre point on the Morice West Forest Service Road in Houston, B.C. (Trevor Hewitt photo)

RCMP clarifies stance on removing officers from Wet’suwet’en territory in northern B.C.

Police say will remove officers only if hereditary chiefs keep road open to pipeline workers

The RCMP has clarified its position on its intention to exit the Wet’suwet’en territory in northern B.C., following a statement from the federal public safety minister surrounding the fierce dispute on the Coastal GasLink pipeline.

In an emailed statement on Friday, the B.C. RCMP clarified that it will remove its officers from the West Morice Service Road in Houston only if the hereditary chiefs commit to keeping the road open to all users, including pipeline construction workers.

“The RCMP understands that not all Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs are available for an immediate discussion, however in anticipation of a meeting, planning has been set in motion to transition operations from the service road to the Houston Detachment,” the email said.

Earlier, B.C. RCMP Deputy Commissioner Jennifer Strachan said in a letter to hereditary chiefs that the RCMP no longer needed to stay because the road has been consistently kept clear.

Adding to the confusion was a statement from Public Safety Minister Bill Blair, who said the hereditary chiefs’ conditions had been met for meeting to discuss the removal of the rail blockades that have hamstrung the shipment of goods from coast to coast.

The chiefs also want Coastal GasLink to stop pipeline construction and remove its workers, which has not happened.

Nationwide protests and blockades of rail lines followed a move by RCMP to enforce a court injunction earlier this month against the hereditary chiefs and their supporters. The protesters have stated these blockades will remain in place until the RCMP abandon its office on the service road.

The RCMP office has been in place since March 2019 at the 29-km mark along the Morice West Forest Service Road. Police have raided the camps twice during that time, arresting approximately 50 people.

Several hereditary chiefs are visiting Mohawk supporters in Ontario this week and will not be able to attend a meeting with RCMP until early next week.

READ MORE: Blair says RCMP have met Wet’suwet’en conditions, calls for end to blockades

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Coastal GasLink

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Search continues for person seen floating in Coquihalla River in Hope

Rescuers halted the search Thursday night as darkness fell

Rescuers halt Coquihalla River search due to darkness, after reports of person in river

No information to indicate a child is involved, RCMP state, after this information surfaced on social media

Mission company wins third award for Kermode Cabin

Lacey Construction nets Georgie Award for project at Sandpiper Resort in Harrison Mills

Two Chilliwack women make weekly Crime Stoppers most wanted list

Ashley Felix and Raina McDonald wanted on unrelated issues

Kilby Park in Harrison Mills under water

Area is often subject to flooding, Historic Site will remain open through the summer

UPDATE: Military reservist facing 22 charges after allegedly ramming gates at Rideau Hall

The man, who police have not yet officially identified, will be charged with multiple offences

Langley Lodge’s deadly outbreak declared over

Fraser Health and long-term care home administrator confirm Friday declaration

PHOTOS: South Surrey tractor project evokes ‘$1-million smile,’ helps connect neighbours

Retired Surrey firefighter Ron Henze began project for friend’s dad to fill time during pandemic

Alberta health minister orders review into response after noose found in hospital in 2016

A piece of rope tied into a noose was found taped to the door of an operating room at the Grande Prairie Hospital in 2016

B.C.’s major rivers surge, sparking flood warnings

A persistent low pressure system over Alberta has led to several days of heavy rain

B.C.’s Indigenous rights law faces 2020 implementation deadline

Pipeline projects carry on as B.C. works on UN goals

‘Mind boggling’: B.C. man $1 million richer after winning Lotto 6/49 a second time

David O’Brien hopes to use his winnings to travel and of course keep playing the lottery

White-throated sparrows have changed their tune, B.C. study unveils

Study marks an unprecedented development scientists say has caused them to sit up and take note

B.C. teacher loses licence after sexual relationships with two recently-graduated students

The teacher won’t be allowed to apply for a teaching certificate until 2035

Most Read