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North Dakota highway closed by pipeline protests may reopen

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) -- Officials say a North Dakota highway may reopen soon after being closed by months of protests over the Dakota Access oil pipeline.

Authorities on Monday outlined conditions for a phased reopening of state Highway 1806 north of Cannon Ball. A bridge on the highway has been closed since being damaged by fires in October.

Among the conditions are that the highway is cleaned and debris removed, and that there is no threat from protesters to block the highway. Those conditions must be met by next Monday.

The North Dakota Department of Transportation completed its initial repair work to the Backwater Bridge last month.

Opponents contend the $3.8 billion, four-state pipeline might pollute water and damage Native American artifacts. Dallas-based developer Energy Transfer Partners says the pipeline will be safe.