‘We support them’: Kahnawake railway blockade continues despite tentative deal in B.C.

A railway blockade remains in place in Kahnawake south of Montreal on Tuesday in support of the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs opposing the construction of natural gas pipeline in British Columbia.

Residents of the Mohawk community have yet to dismantle the barricade after a draft agreement was reached between the senior federal and B.C. ministers and hereditary chiefs on land rights.

The agreement, which was struck over the weekend after three days of talks, still requires the approval of the Wet’suwet’en people.

“We support them,” said Joe Deom, a sub-chief of the Bear clan in Kahnawake, on Tuesday.

While little information has been revealed about the proposed deal, the parties acknowledged they did not come to an agreement on the contentious building of the Coastal GasLink pipeline.

Kahnawake residents and officials held a meeting on Monday night to discuss what steps the community should take next, but the blockade was still standing as of Tuesday morning.

Leaders have said they are waiting for more details about the agreement before the protest will come to an end.

“There was no decision intended for last night,” said Deom. “It was just an exchange of ideas and opinions. And what we’re going to do moving forward.”

The nationwide protests in solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en, which began in early February, disrupted service on railway tracks across Canada. As a result, commuter and freight trains were cancelled in parts of Quebec and Ontario.

In Kahnawake, the railway blockade has halted service on the Candiac train line, which brings commuters to and from Montreal. Shuttle buses remain in place to help train users.

“The service on the Candiac exo4 line remains suspended for an indefinite period,” exo, the regional transit authority, wrote to commuters.

— With files from Global News’ Mike Armstrong and the Canadian Press


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