The Ogala Sioux, the native American tribe that owns the territory where the Mount Rushmore is located has banned U.S. President Donald Trump from Mount Rushmore.
according to a report by Independent UK, The Ogala Sioux tribal council voted on Friday to ban President Donald Trump and the South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem from Mount Rushmore hours ahead of a planned Fourth of July celebration.
The president and governor were due at the monument on Friday evening for the celebration, which will include a fireworks celebration.
Native News Online reported that 7,500 are expected to attend the celebration.
The tribe said the lack of government-to-government consultation on the event was a primary motivator for the vote. Mount Rushmore sits on territory that was unceded in treaties in the Black Hills.
Ogala President Julian Bear Runner spoke with The Guardian about the tribe’s concerns over Mr Trump’s visit.
“The lands on which that mountain is carved and the lands he’s about to visit belong to the Great Sioux nation under a treaty signed in 1851 and the For Laramie Treaty of 1868 and I have to tell him he doesn’t have permission from its original sovereign owners to enter the territory at this time.”
Mr Bear Runner also sent the president a letter telling him he wasn’t welcome on the land.
Appearing on MSNBC, Mr Bear Runner said: “The people are angry. All I can do as a leader is stand back and support them. And to stand with them and help them in every way I can to do what is right.”
The council also voted to ban Mr Trump over fears that a fireworks display could start wildfires. Mr Trump requested a near decade long fireworks ban be lifted so he could have the event.
“They used to do it many years ago, and for some reason they were unable or unallowed to do it. They just weren’t allowed to do it, and I opened it up and we’re going to have a tremendous 3 July and then we’re coming back here, celebrating the Fourth of July in Washington DC,” Mr Trump said.
Cheryl Schreier, a former superintendent of Mount Rushmore, penned an opinion piece in the Washington Post calling for the event to be cancelled due to the potential for wildfires.
“And this year, resuming the fireworks demonstration is an even greater threat to both humans and nature. Thanks to an extremely dry summer, South Dakota faces a higher than usual risk of wildfires,” she wrote.”