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LDS Church releases statement regarding armed occupation in Oregon

By Faith Heaton Jolley | Posted - Jan. 4, 2016 at 5:20 p.m.



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BURNS, Ore. — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released a statement Monday after armed protesters took over a federal building at an Oregon wildlife refuge during a land dispute.

One of the protesters occupying the national wildlife refuge in Oregon says the ultimate goal is to turn the land over to local authorities so people can use it free of federal oversight, according to the Associated Press. Ryan Bundy — one of the sons of Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, who was involved in a 2014 standoff with the government over grazing rights — told The Associated Press Sunday the protesters want to "restore the rights to people so they can use the land and resources" for ranching, logging, mining and recreation.

The LDS Church released the following statement in regards to the ongoing situation:

"While the disagreement occurring in Oregon about the use of federal lands is not a Church matter, Church leaders strongly condemn the armed seizure of the facility and are deeply troubled by the reports that those who have seized the facility suggest that they are doing so based on scriptural principles. This armed occupation can in no way be justified on a scriptural basis. We are privileged to live in a nation where conflicts with government or private groups can — and should — be settled using peaceful means, according to the laws of the land."

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Faith Heaton Jolley

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