(EDITOR’S NOTE: This article contains extremely graphic photos of a severe injury, and may be upsetting to some readers.)
Gruesome photos of a Dakota Access Pipeline protester’s injuries at the hands of police are going viral.
In two separate Facebook posts, a protester is seen cradling her arm while sitting in a car, covered in multiple layers due to below-freezing temperatures. She had just been protesting construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux on Highway 1806 near Fort Yates, North Dakota when law enforcement agencies suddenly attacked nonviolent protesters with water cannons and non-lethal projectile rounds.
Remi Graber, who received the photos of their friend after the attacks Sunday night, posted the photos to their Facebook page, describing the context surrounding the protester, whom they identified as “Sophia” in an email, and the severity of Sophia’s injuries.
Last night, protesters and protectors were engaged by law enforcement and hostile forces. They began spraying water on people in below freezing temperatures, placing hundreds of people in a life threatening situation, exposing them to a high risk of hypothermia and freeze injuries.
As my friend attempted to flee, they were struck in the left arm by a concussion grenade causing severe injuries to their left arm. They were evacuated out and are being rushed to have emergency surgery done.
Graber then issued a call to action to all readers to support the Standing Rock protesters and collectively denounce the heavy-handed policing by Morton County, North Dakota law enforcement agencies.
I don’t care who you voted for or even if you voted. I don’t want to hear a fucking peep out of any of you who have been criticizing protesters. The only thing I want to hear from your mouths is your condemnation of the law enforcement military, and security forces which have violently engaged friends, family, and strangers that have joined to protect tribal lands from corporate encroachement[sic].
To those that are able, you already know what you should be doing…
To LEO agencies…you have just openly declared war.
As the Washington Post reported, law enforcement officers used water cannons last night on the Standing Rock protest encampment, even as temperatures were in the 20s. Police cited an “ongoing riot” as an excuse for their violent escalation, though protesters insist they are unarmed and resisting peacefully. The Standing Rock Sioux have pledged to do everything in their power to stop the pipeline’s construction, which they say will endanger the Missouri River, and by default, drinking water for millions of people.
Tom Cahill is a writer for US Uncut based in the Pacific Northwest. He specializes in coverage of political, economic, and environmental news. You can contact him via email at [email protected], or friend him on Facebook.