Ace Hardware denies ban on sales to pipeline protesters
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The Ace Hardware chain is denying widely circulated reports that it was refusing to sell camping supplies to protesters demonstrating against the Dakota Access oil pipeline in North Dakota.
Some supporters of the protest tweeted what was said to be a statement from Ace that said stores near the area were asked by law enforcement officials to "refrain from selling material that could be used at the camps." The largest encampment set up in opposition to the four-state, $3.8 billion pipeline has been called the largest gathering of Native American tribes in a century.
Ace spokeswoman Anna Wyrwas said in a statement Thursday that the chain hasn't banned product sales at any Ace store. And a state official denies law enforcement ever ordered Ace to halt sales to demonstrators.