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On Saturday, September 17th, penobscot nation representatives Kathy Paul and June Sapiel joined representatives from 350 Maine, The Sierra Club, Maine Peoples Alliance, Food and Water Watch, Community Water Justice, Environment Maine, the Southern Maine Workers Center, and Protect South Portland. The event was organized as a response to the ongoing protests taking place in North Dakota.

Those events are connected to a dispute over land use. Organized as "Standing in Solidarity," attendees at the event in Maine were asked to wear blue items of clothing.

Blue, a universally recognized symbol of water, was chosen to symbolize the idea that "water is life." The standing rock sioux are protesting the creation of an oil pipeline which would transport shale oil reserves from the Bakkan Oil Fields in North Dakota to consumers in Illinois.

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Standing in solidarity

They assert that the process of building this pipeline will endanger their community. The Standing Rock Sioux believe that their sacred ancestral burial lands and community drinking water access will be threatened as a result of this pipeline. Following news of a catastrophic oil pipeline failure in Alabama just a day ago, the Standing Rock Sioux have been joined by representatives from Native American groups from across the nation.

Native justice

Setting up make-shift camps, the Standing Rock Sioux protest has swelled to as many as 5,000 people at various times. This number is notable considering only 25 of North Dakota's 357 towns count more then 2,000 residents. Native American Tribal Associations from across the country are unifying in support of the Standing Rock Sioux.

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This event is becoming a rallying point and many are seeking to align their own regional concerns with this on-going national story.

Ecological justice

Humanitarian aid groups are keeping close watch on the protests in North Dakota. As temperatures dip, the makeshift encampments and shelters which have been housing the protesters are being pushed to their very limits. All compassionate people across the United States and Planet Earth are urged to stand in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux.