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Northern Cheyenne Tribe battles state on river

The newly inducted president of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe of Montana says a legal dispute over the Tongue River is the tribe's most pressing issue.

The tribe and the federal government contend the tribe owns at least half of the riverbed. But outgoing Montana Gov. Judy Martz (R) says the state owns all of it and joined a federal lawsuit over the objections of other state officials.

Fidelity Exploration & Production Co. says it is caught in the middle. The company obtained drilling leases from the state but the leases could be invalidated due to the tribe's half-ownership.

Get the Story:
River runs through development spat (AP 11/23)

Relevant Links:
Northern Cheyenne Tribe -

Related Stories:
Fight over Montana tribal riverbed continues (11/19)
Montana officials spar over tribal riverbed suit (11/05)
Montana governor to fight tribe's riverbed rights (10/20)
Montana won't join fight over tribe's riverbed (10/19)