Tribal chief calls for nonviolent mine opposition

Bad River tribal chief calls for nonviolent opposition to northern Wisconsin mine
Tribal chief calls for nonviolent mine opposition
Activists at a northern Wisconsin mining site

The head of an American Indian tribe is urging nonviolent opposition to the possible opening of an iron ore mine near their reservation in northern Wisconsin.

Mike Wiggins Jr., chairman of the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, said the tribe condemns “any planned or improvised act of violence or vandalism” against the mining company.

Wiggins’ written statement issued Friday comes at the end of a tense week that saw mining company Gogebic Taconite hire paramilitary style guards armed with high-powered rifles at the site in the Penokee Hills. The guards were removed on Wednesday because they did not have the required state license.

Wiggins said the tribe’s opposition to the mine remains strong, but it will only condone nonviolent civil resistance as necessary.