The White House has been accused of political interference after the US Army failed to approve the completion of the Dakota Access Pipeline.
Supported by the next US President, Donald Trump, the controversial oil pipeline has been at the centre of months of protests by the Standing Rock Sioux tribe in North Dakota.
The Native American tribe says a part of the line designed to run under a reservoir on the Missouri River could contaminate drinking water and run over sacred burial sites.
Two firms involved in its construction said the decision was “currying favour with a narrow and extreme political constituency,” and pointed out that the project had already gained court approval.
There was jubilation in Cannon Ball, at the main protest camp. Adan Bearcub told the press:
“This lifted my heart. You know, we came down here from Washington State, to support these brave water protectors and we came in yesterday expecting the worst but this is the best news that I’ve heard.”
Rory Erler Wakemup was indignant about the construction of the pipeline.
“Bottom line is the way the United States has screwed over the Native Americans in the past is the same way United States corporations are screwing over everyone now and we have to band together and keep these tar sands in the ground and live sustainably. This is just the tip of the iceberg of all the issues that are affecting our globe, our lives, and our future here,” he said.