BRITISH COLUMBIA

Elsipogtog Protest Sparks Fears Among B.C. First Nation

10/18/2013 08:52 EDT | Updated 01/23/2014 06:58 EST
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KAMLOOPS, B.C. - The chief of a First Nation in British Columbia's southern Interior says he is alarmed by the violent confrontation between aboriginal protesters and police in New Brunswick.

Dozens were arrested and five police cruisers were torched after officers moved on demonstrators opposed to shale gas exploration, also known as fracking.

Whispering Pines Chief Mike LeBourdais says his Kamloops-area band doesn't want the same problems as Kinder Morgan proceeds with plans to almost triple the capacity of its Trans Mountain pipeline carrying petroleum products from Alberta to the West Coast, through the territories of 11 B.C. First Nations.

He says the difference is that Kinder Morgan is negotiating with the B.C. bands, sidestepping the anger that has surfaced in New Brunswick.

But LeBourdais warns the symptoms are the same and it's important to examine the situation in the Maritimes to avoid a similar crisis in British Columbia.

He also says all parties in Canada should be able to sit across the table and negotiate peacefully. (CFJC)

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