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Last Line Of Communication With Militants Cut


Sean Anderson, of Idaho, one of the last remaining occupiers at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, looks through binoculars at the front gate Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2016, near Burns, Oregon.

Sean Anderson, of Idaho, one of the last remaining occupiers at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, looks through binoculars at the front gate Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2016, near Burns, Oregon.

Rick Bowmer/AP

For the past 72 hours, OPB has communicated with militants still occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge by calling militant David Fry’s personal cellphone.  

Since 9 a.m. Tuesday, militants had established regular check-in times to communicate their status.  

During those conversations, the militants described their life inside the refuge and said they had enough food and fuel to continue the occupation for an extended time.

Fry also told OPB that the FBI warned them if he or the others inside gave comments to press groups, they would lose access to incoming calls.

OPB’s line of communication with the militants was cut Wednesday.  

OPB reached out to the camp at 1:30 p.m., per the scheduled check-in, but the line was busy and remained so.  

At 2:15 p.m., OPB received a call from a blocked number. The anonymous caller said that all lines of communication to the militants still inside the refuge had been cut at 12:50 p.m. and that further calls and updates would not be possible. The caller declined multiple requests to identify himself. 

To do so would compromise ongoing negotiations between the FBI and the remaining militants, he said.  

The caller said remaining militants Fry, Sean and Sandy Anderson, and Jeff Banta were safe.

He refused to comment further before hanging up.

Editor’s Note: This story has been corrected to reflect the first time the militants were contacted. OPB regrets the error.

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