CANNON BALL, N.D. (AP) — Dakota Access pipeline protesters say they don't intend to leave their encampment in the near future.

Isaac Weston is a member of the Oglala Sioux tribe from South Dakota. He was one of several people who spoke at a news conference Saturday in response to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' decision to close land where hundreds have been camping for months.

Weston says indigenous people are the wardens of the land and the government can't remove them. He says they have a right to be there, and they are protecting the land and water.

Others say they don't believe the Corps will force protesters off the federal land north of the Cannonball River on Dec. 5, but that the government's letter put the protesters on notice and limits the Corps' liability.

The chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe says he received a letter from the Corps on Friday that said officials will close federal land where a large encampment is located on Dec. 5. The letter says anyone on the property north of the Cannonball River after that date will be trespassing and subject to prosecution.

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