The Latest: FAA restricts flights in pipeline protest area

AP News
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Posted: Oct 27, 2016 7:53 AM
The Latest: FAA restricts flights in pipeline protest area

CANNON BALL, N.D. (AP) — The Latest on the Dakota Access oil pipeline protest (all times local):

6:45 a.m.

The Federal Aviation Administration is restricting flights over an area of North Dakota where law enforcement and people protesting the construction of the Dakota Access oil pipeline are bracing for a confrontation.

The restriction went into effect Wednesday and will last until Nov. 5.

Authorities say only aircraft affiliated with the North Dakota Tactical Operation Center are allowed within a radius of about 4 ½ miles of Cannon Ball, where the protesters have set up camp. The FAA has also banned drones in the airspace.

A months-long dispute over the pipeline reached a crisis point at the weekend when some 200 protesters set up camp on land owned by pipeline developer Energy Transfer Partners. On Wednesday, authorities gathered in the area with heavy equipment including Humvees and buses and demanded they leave. The protesters refused.

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12:10 a.m.

Protesters trying to stop construction of the Dakota Access oil pipeline are bracing for a confrontation with police after the demonstrators refused to leave private land in the pipeline's path.

A months-long dispute over the four-state, $3.8 billion pipeline reached a crisis point when some 200 protesters set up camp on land owned by pipeline developer Energy Transfer Partners.

Law enforcement officers demanded that the protesters leave on Wednesday and they refused. It appeared that only thick fog and cloudy skies kept a large contingent of law enforcement officers from moving in. Officials have frequently monitored protesters by air.

Cass County Sheriff Paul Laney said Wednesday that the rule of law must be enforced.