Veterans’ group criticizes vets joining pipeline protest

North Dakota Pipeline protesters stand in creek
Dozens of protestors demonstrating against the expansion of the Dakota Access Pipeline wade in cold creek waters confronting local police, as remnants of pepper spray waft over the crowd near Cannon Ball, N.D., Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2016. Officers in riot gear clashed again Wednesday with protesters near the Dakota Access pipeline, hitting several dozen with pepper spray as they waded through waist-deep water in an attempt to reach property owned by the pipeline's developer. (AP Photo/John L. Mone)

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — Some military veterans are taking issue with other veterans’ plans to join a protest against the four-state, $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline in North Dakota.

North Dakota Veterans Coordinating Council president Russ Stabler says his organization is trying to discourage the 2,000 veterans with “Veterans Stand for Standing Rock” from going to the encampment starting Sunday.

Stabler says his group supports anyone who wants to protest peacefully, but believes the pipeline demonstrations have not been conducted in “the military manner in which our veterans behave.”

The Morton County Sheriff’s Department also released a video that features a veteran who is critical of the group.

The veterans’ group says they’re going to defend protesters against “assault and intimidation at the hands of the militarized police force” and pipeline security.

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