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Talks between Wet'suwet'en hereditary chiefs, provincial, federal ministers continue

Last Updated Feb 29, 2020 at 8:36 am PST

FILE: Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relation, Carolyn Bennett and B.C. Indigenous Relations Minister Scott Fraser smile as they leave talks at the Wet'suwet'en offices in Smithers, B.C., Thursday, February 27, 2020. The Ministers along with Wet'suwet'en hereditary chiefs to discussed the ending blockades happening across the country. The blockades are set up by those opposed to the LNG pipeline in northern British Columbia. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)

SMITHERS (NEWS 1130) — Talks aimed at ending the pipeline dispute in northern B.C., which led to protests and rail blockades across the country have continued into early Saturday morning.

So far, there is no word on the progress of the talks.

A spokesman for federal Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett said they wouldn’t be providing updates on talks with Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs until later Saturday morning.

Bennett and her B.C. counterpart Scott Fraser are scheduled to speak to the media at 9:00 a.m.

Bennett and Fraser said difficult work was ahead for them going into the meeting Thursday.

“We would want any meeting with the prime minister and the premier to be a good meeting and therefore we have to do the work,” Bennett said.

Nathan Cullen, a former New Democrat MP who is acting as a liaison between the governments and chiefs, says there is no “quick fix” to the issues being discussed.

Five hereditary chiefs have taken issue with the project, which would see part of a 670-kilometre natural gas pipeline be built on the Wet’suwet’en territory.

Solidarity protesters have said they won’t stop their actions until the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs are satisfied with the outcome of the talks.


-With files from Mike Hall, Cormac Mac Sweeney and Nikitha Martins