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Scenes From the Native Nations Rise March in D.C.

Marchers gathered today in Washington, D.C., to protest the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Trump administration.

By Carson Leigh Brown

Thousands of First Nations members and allies took the streets of Washington, D.C., today to protest the Trump administration’s policy reversal on the Dakota Access Pipeline. The protest was the last of four days of activity, which also saw the activists set up teepees under the Washington Monument earlier this week. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe lead today’s march, carrying on modes of resistance from the protest camps in North Dakota.

The Sioux tribe started protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline in 2014 after the plans became public, but the project gained national attention when calls on social media drew networks of protestors from across the country to occupy a camp on the proposed construction site, blocking construction of the nearly 2,000-mile pipeline. Protesters set up life at an elaborate camp there for months, with even a small school to teach indigenous history, culture, and language. The Facebook page says the volunteer run-school supports “parents choosing to homeschool their children in Očhéthi Šakówiŋ Camp.” The name translates to “Seven Council Fires,” referencing the tribes that comprise the Sioux Nation.

September marked a major victory for the #noDAPL crowd, when Barack Obama paused construction. Now, after an executive order from President Donald Trump, construction is on its way again, and the Sioux nation and its allies have picked up action in D.C. to protest the pipeline, which they say will detrimentally disrupt sacred land and threaten their water supply.


Protesters oppose the construction of the proposed 1,172-mile Dakota Access Pipeline that runs within a half-mile of the Standing Rock Sioux reservation in North Dakota. (Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)


An activist adjusts his hat during the Native Nations Rise protest. (Photo: Brendan SmialowskiI/AFP/Getty Images)


Activists prepared for the Native American rights march past the Department of the Treasury by burning sage, among other traditions. (Photos: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)


(Photos: Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images & Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)


Left: Younger protesters gathered under historic monuments, markers of the very origins of modern questions of treaty-granted sovereignty and the right to land control. (Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images) | Right: Activists disassemble a teepee as they rally in front of the Trump International Hotel. (Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)


A protester holds an oversized replica of a Make America Great Again hat in front of the White House. (Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)


Left: A police officer clears protesters off the sidewalk in front of the White House. (Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images) | Right: An activist wears his father’s Marine uniform along with traditional regalia. (Photo: Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images)


Activists assembled teepees outside Trump tower during the protests, and used the space as a center for activity. (Photos: Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images)


The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe held the event with a march to the White House to urge for halting the construction of the project. (Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images)


(Photo: Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images)