Recent CPTnet stories

Elsipogtog: An Ugly Day in New Brunswick

Thursday 17 October was an "ugly day in the history of the province of New Brunswick,” according to Mi'kmaq Chief Arren Sock as he prepared to meet with Premier David Alward the following day.

At approximately 6 AM, the RCMP broke the blockade of vehicles owned by SWN Resources parked in a compound near Rexton, New Brunswick. The Mi’kmaq of Elsipogtog First Nation, together with their Acadian and Anglophone allies, kept the gate blockaded for 19 days, even in the face of a court injunction acquired by the US-based company doing seismic testing for the presence of shale gas.

ABORIGINAL JUSTICE: Elsipogtog: Patience is a virtue

ABORIGINAL JUSTICE: Elsipogtog: Patience is a virtue

Standing at the BlockadeEntering its second week, the blockade at the Southwestern Energy Resources (SWN) “thumper” compound on Route 134 near Rexton, New Brunswick shows no signs of ending.

First Peoples from Elsipogtog and other communities, as well as Acadian and Anglophone protectors, make up the encampment. CPTers Chris Sabas and Carrie Peters also remain within the encampment, enjoying brief respites off site thanks to the generosity of local community members. Donated food and supplies continue to arrive at the encampment.

Elsipogtog: Blockade Begins

On Sunday, 29 September 2013, Elsipogtog women protectors blocked the entrance to a recently constructed compound housing Southwestern Energy Resources Canada (SWN) equipment on local Highway 134, near present-day Rexton, New Brunswick.  The compound is located on Elsipogtog traditional territory, which is unceded land.

Within minutes they were joined by other indigenous protectors, as well as Acadian and Anglophone community members. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) attempted to re-secure the entrance to the compound, but the unarmed protectors successfully stood their ground. An encampment was erected. At the time of this release, the blockade has entered its fifth day. All SWN property within the compound remains untouched and unmolested.

Aboriginal Justice: Breaking News - CPT invited to accompany delegation to Britain

Indigenous and faith leaders in Canada have invited Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) to accompany a delegation to Britain from 2-9 October, 2013, marking the Royal Proclamation of 1763.

The Proclamation of King George III was an attempt following the Seven Year's War to set policy for the new British territories in North America. The proclamation is significant for recognising a form of territorial sovereignty for First Peoples, including the Crown's need to secure consent for future settlement or expansion.

Although the Canadian Constitution recognises “existing aboriginal and treaty rights,” the government continues to neglect the need for consent for projects affecting First Nations peoples, contributing to widespread land-rights violations.

In the United States, the protection from predatory settlement offered by the Royal Proclamation was one of the causes for the American Revolution, as settlers broke away from imperial Britain to pursue expansion unfettered by agreements with the First Peoples.

Mi'kmaq campaigners involved in the current resistance to shale gas extraction recently referenced the Royal Proclamation in an official request for the Queen's intervention. The team will support this call, and connect with UK anti-fracking campaigners.

#GIVINGTUESDAY It was important that CPT was able to send representatives on short notice after it received the invitation from indigenous leaders.  We need to have a reserve of funds so that we can respond to requests such as these.  They go a long way toward building alliances and trust.

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CPT INTERNATIONAL: CPT Americas Convergence to participate in School of the Americas witness at Fort Benning, 20-24 November

 

Join us this November for the first ever CPT Americas Convergence in Georgia, USA.   CPTers and supporters from Turtle Island (North America) to the Southern Cone will gather for five days of formative events including worship, public protest, fellowship, accompaniment, and the opportunity for nonviolent direct action Wednesday, 20 November through Sunday, 24 November 2013.  

CPT will partner with the Alterna Community and former Steering Committee member Anton Flores-Maisonet, based in LaGrange, GA to participate in an annual public witness and civil disobedience action at the Stewart Detention Center in Lumpkin.   Stewart, a privately run prison, is the largest immigrant detention center in the United States. Alterna and Georgia Detention Watch have long monitored this facility, documenting violations of human rights and detention standards and organizing vigils to remember the detainees trapped there as well as Roberto Martínez Medina who died while in detention at Stewart.

Following the witness in Lumpkin, CPT will join thousands gathered at the gates of Ft. Benning in Columbus, GA to call for the closure of the infamous U.S. Army School of the Americas (SOA).  Since 1946, this “School of Assassins” has trained over 64,000 Latin American soldiers in counterinsurgency techniques, psychological warfare, military intelligence, and interrogation tactics.  SOA graduates have consistently used their skills to wage a war against their own people, targeting educators, union organizers, religious workers, student leaders, and others who work for the rights of the poor.   They have tortured, raped, “disappeared,” assassinated, and massacred hundreds and thousands of Latin Americans.   Although the official name changed in 2001 from SOA to WHINSEC (Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation), the school under any name is synonymous with torture and impunity.