A B.C. Supreme Court judge has granted the City of Burnaby an injunction to remove a pipeline protest camp outside one of Kinder Morgan’s terminals.
Under the terms of the injunction, protesters at “Camp Cloud” have 48 hours to remove all structures, shelters and vehicles from the site.
Justice Geoffrey Gomery also ordered that a sacred fire burning under very dry conditions and near several fuel tank farms must be extinguished.
He said people can peacefully protest, but they aren’t allowed to build more structures.
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In response to the decision, Camp Cloud issued a statement, asking others to join in their protest.
In the statement, they said their camp is unified and centered around the sacred fire, which is central to the governance of Indigenous peoples.
They also called for the resignation of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who approved the expansion of the pipeline.
The city issued a 72-hour eviction order to the encampment near Underhill and Shellmont streets on July 18, but protesters have refused to budge.
The camp includes a two-storey wooden “watchtower,” makeshift shower facilities and a fire that burns around-the-clock. Indigenous camp members describe the fire as sacred.
The city says the camp has violated numerous city bylaws, and that the fire is a safety risk.
Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan said the city has also faced increasing complaints from residents about the campers’ behaviour, including alcohol and drug use.
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A pro-pipeline group also claims it was assaulted by camp members.
Burnaby lawyer Gregory McDade told the judge that while the city supports peaceful protests, the camp violates several bylaws, trespasses on city property and constitutes a public nuisance.
He says the campers ignored an eviction notice issued last month and the camp has grown significantly since a separate court ruling protected it in March.
The BC Supreme Court ruled in March that both the camp and a separate nearby watch-house could remain in place in response to a court injunction filed by Trans Mountain parent company Kinder Morgan.
Protesters have said that they are willing to make changes to the camp, but that they have the constitutional right to be there.
Camp supporters also say they have been receiving death threats, and have raised the spectre of the historical Gustafsen Lake and Oka standoffs should police try and intervene.
— With files from The Canadian Press
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