(CNN)Police in riot gear faced off with protesters on horseback as the monthslong protests over the Dakota Access Pipeline came to a head Thursday.
At least 117 protesters were arrested after law enforcement Humvees and helicopters began to flood the area to break up a protester encampment near the pipeline’s path.
Calling themselves “water protectors,” supporters of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe set up tents and teepees on the land, about an hour south of Bismarck, which they said belongs to the tribe under a 19-century treaty.
But authorities said they are trespassing on pipeline property. Officials brought in reinforcements from seven states to remove protesters and dismantle roadblocks made of hay bales and wood.
As the standoff continued, police deployed bean bag rounds and pepper spray gas and unleashed a high-pitched siren to disperse the crowd.
But Archambault said he thinks the Native Americans are getting short-changed once again.
“We’re not opposed to energy independence. We’re not opposed to economic development,” he told CNN.
“What we’re opposed to is paying for all the benefits that this country receives.”