Levi Rickert, editor-in-chief in Native Challenges. Discussion »
RAPID CITY, SOUTH DAKOTA - The auction to sell close to 2,000 acres of a sacred site in the Black Hills called Pe' Sla has been cancelled. The auction was planned for Saturday, August 25. No information of why the auction, which has generated international attention, was cancelled was forthcoming late Thursday.
Pe' Sla Sacred Site in the Black Hills of South Dakota.
American Indians from throughout Indian country have been adamantly opposed to Pe' Sla. Since the auction came to the attention of Indian country during August, money has been raised by various sources, including the efforts by Chase Iron Eyes through "Lastrealindians" website.
“Lastrealindians monitored the auction site and learned of the cancellation Thursday afternoon,”
Iron Eyes commented to the Native News Network on Thursday.
“Calls were made to brockauctions.com with no comment offered. Lastrealindians is vigilant until Pe'Sla is secured.”
The cancellation came one day after United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, James Anaya, urged the United States Government and the local and state authorities in South Dakota to address concerns expressed by the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota peoples about an impending private land sale in the Black Hills region of the central-northern state, that will affect a site of great spiritual significance to them.
Late Wednesday, the Department of the Interior-Indian Affairs spokeswoman Nedra Darling issued the following comment to the Native News Network to the call by the United Nations Special Rapporteur.:
“The Department of the Interior will work with the State Department and other relevant state and federal agencies to respond to the concerns raised by the Special Rapporteur and to help ensure that the rights and freedoms of tribal peoples are respected.”
Whether or not the call for the United States Government to address this issue had anything to do with the cancellation was not known.
While the cancellation appears to be a victory for those who opposed the sale of the property, organizers of the efforts to secure Pe' Sla do not want to take anything for granted.
Late Thursday afternoon, Lastrealindians.com issued this press statement:
"Pe' Sla has been taken of the auction block. However, the property is publicly listed. The Tribes of the Great Sioux Nation are moving forward on their own behalf with Lastrealindians, Inc. in continuing to raise money to ensure Pe' Sla will be protected as a sacred site, forever."
posted August 24, 2012 8:40 am edt