USA: DAPL activists decry renewed pipeline construction in LA

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Environmental activists continued to rally outside the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) offices in Los Angeles, Thursday, after construction on the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) resumed twenty four hours after the federal agency issued its go ahead.

Protesters chanted anti-pipeline slogans and held banners naming the investors involved in the project's funding.

The company building DAPL, Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), said it started drilling under a North Dakota lake on Thursday and that the pipeline could be finished by early May.

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe responded to the government's decision to ignore continued protests by filing a court challenge seeking a temporary restraining order to stop construction. The oral arguments are set for Monday; however, the activists are not expected be successful.

The project, which was stopped in the final days of former US President Barack Obama's reign and relaunched by an executive order by US President Donald Trump in January, is set to cross sacred Native American land and pass underneath the Missouri river.

Since the project was given the green light in late July 2016, the 1,886-kilometre (1,172 miles) pipeline has sparked outrage among Native American communities, North Dakota locals, US citizens, and people around the world.

The project is expected to carry crude oil from the North Dakota region, north of the tribe's lands, to southern Illinois. Thousands of Native Americans representing tribes from all over the country have travelled to North Dakota to camp in the solidarity with Standing Rock Sioux.

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