UPDATE from HPL (Hopi Partition
Land) residents: Shirley Tohannie and elder Caroline Tohannie
had their entire herd of 65 sheep impounded by the Hopi Rangers
(US federal government) Tuesday, October 22, 2014.If the fines
aren’t paid the sheep will go to auction, and the family is
being told that the sheep will not be able to return to the
family’s rangeland. The cost to release the livestock is nearly
Jerry Babbit Lane, the Tohannie’s neighbor on the
HPL, was arrested by Hopi rangers when he attempted to check on
his neighbors and was charged with disorderly conduct. He was
released this evening, 10/23. Rangers told Shirley they plan to
take Rena’s (Jerry’s mother) sheep too and that they’re going to
start impounding across the HPL.
As we’re writing, another family on Big Mountain
has had nearly their entire herd impounded.
PLEASE DONATE HERE for
an impoundment fund.
Residents are requesting human rights observers and
sheepherders during this time of escalated harassment.
If you or anyone you know can come be a human rights observer
to support the Dineh resistance on Black Mesa, now is
the time. Doing human rights observation work can help
stop or slow down the impoundment process. Families who will be
potentially impacted by impoundments are requesting solidarity.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you can come out.
“Call the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Hopi Rangers, and the
Department of Interior. Ask they stop impounding sheep on the
HPL. This is current day colonialism, our food sovereignty is
being attacked. Call the BIA superintendent Wendel Honanie (at
928-738-2228), the Hopi Rangers Clayton Honyumptewa at
(928-734-3601), and the Department of Interior at (202
208-3100) and ask that they stop the unjust
Although these orders are coming from current Hopi
policy, ultimately the relocation laws and livestock
impoundments result from the federal government and Peabody
Energy’s divide and conquer strategy used to open up the land
for massive coal mining. “In the 1970s, Hopi elders
encouraged the Dienh elders to remain on their homelands, saying
if they did relocate, the coal mine would expand. The Hopi
elders said it wasn’t them who wanted the land.”--NaBahii
A July 2012 report by the Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission
classifies the relocation as a massive human rights
violation and demands the immediate repeal of PL 93-531 and an
end to relocation efforts and harassment in the form of
surveillance, livestock impoundments, and disruption of
gatherings and ceremonies that the resistance community
The sheep sustain the vitality of the people and
the land, and traditional grazing practices need to be supported
not severed. Impoundments are nothing less than
harassment and human rights violations.
For background information on the resistance of the
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