Posted at: 07/12/2013 2:13 PM
Updated at: 07/12/2013 3:21 PM
MADISON, Wis. (AP) - 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, says 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 says the tribe's opposition to the mine remains strong, but it will only condone nonviolent civil resistance as necessary.
Walker comments on mine protesters
Gov. Scott Walker says the activities of protesters have "no place in Wisconsin."
Walker issued a statement Friday commenting on the situation at the mine site, which has grown increasingly tense this week when the mining company hired paramilitary style guards to patrol the site.
Walker did not comment on the guards in his written statement. He decried protesters at the site as "extremists" who "should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."
Walker says he spoke with the Iron County sheriff and offered any assistance that may be needed.
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