12 pipeline protesters arrested at B.C. ministry office: Victoria police

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VICTORIA, B.C. – Victoria police say a dozen adults have been taken into custody following a day-long protest in the offices of the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources.

Police say officers were called Tuesday morning for a report that a group had occupied the lobby area of the building.

Protesters said they wouldn’t leave the building until the demands of Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs had been met to stop the construction of the Coastal GasLink natural gas pipeline through their territory in northern B.C.

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Police say there were numerous efforts over 15 hours to resolve the situation without arrests, but officers were asked to remove protesters by the building owner once negotiations failed.

A statement from the Victoria Police Department says the minimum amount of force was used to make the arrests, which took place over a four-hour period.

There was also a crowd outside the building and police say their officers were surrounded, pushed and shoved while carrying out protesters who had been inside and that resulted in the arrest of one person outside.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 22, 2020.

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